Tuesday, September 22, 2015

“Love and say it with your life.”

We talk eloquently about our commitment to the principles of Christianity, and yet our lives are saturated with the practices of paganism. We proclaim our devotion to democracy, but we sadly practice the very opposite of the democratic creed. We talk passionately about peace, and at the same time we assiduously prepare for war. We make our fervent pleas for the high road of justice, and then we tread unflinchingly the low road of injustice. This strange dichotomy, this agonizing gulf between the ought and the is, represents the tragic theme of man's earthly pilgrimage.” ― Martin Luther King Jr., Strength to Love

Gospel Text: (Lk 8:19-21)
The mother of Jesus and his brothers came to him
but were unable to join him because of the crowd.
He was told, “Your mother and your brothers are standing outside
and they wish to see you.”
He said to them in reply, “My mother and my brothers
are those who hear the word of God and act on it.”

Why would Jesus dishonor His family like this you may ask your self after reading today’s gospel?
With a second look, however, we might discover something new, something intentional on the part of Jesus.  With this simple statement, Jesus has created an entirely new reality, a new world order and a new way of seeing and understanding relationships.  Jesus has redefined the concept of “family”.  No longer is “family” caused by or limited by blood lines.  Family is now defined as a faith bond.  Family is now completely open to include all who hear the Word of God and act upon it.  By no means is Jesus rejecting His mother and family members.  After all, do we know of anyone other than Mary who more openly and readily heard the Word of God in her life and acted upon it?  Not likely.  Mary is at the heart of this new reality, this expanded concept of the family tree.
Jesus goes on to say that it is not enough to hear the Word; we must put it into action if we want to become God's relatives. We must put into practice what we are told! This is why it would perhaps be good to ask ourselves whether we only behave obediently when what we are asked just suits us well or is rather easy to do, or if, on the contrary, when it means giving up our comfort, our own prestige, our material things or whatever leisure time we may have at our disposal until some better time may come.
Are we sufficiently challenged by that?

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