Outrageous Words of Jesus

Saturday, September 15, 2012 by Food for Thought

MEMORIAL OF OUR LADY OF SORROWS

FirstReading: 1 Cor 10:14-22
Psalm: Ps 116:12-13, 17-18
Gospel: Jn 19:25-27 Or: Lk 2:33-35

The Lord brings his Sermon on the Plain to a close. He says “my words (i.e., the words I’ve spoken in this sermon) are a solid foundation on which to build your house. Build your house on these my words and no force will succeed in knocking it down, will succeed even in shaking
it.”

So it is by the words of the sermon that we are to live our lives. This is what discipleship is: taking Jesus’ words seriously and putting them into practice. Being convinced of the truth of Jesus words, recognizing the wisdom in them is spiritually a very healthy state of mind. But this sort of mental or emotional acceptance of Jesus’ words is not discipleship. Discipleship expects that Jesus’ words be lived out, that they dictate behavior.

The problem, though, is that many of the words Jesus spoke in this sermon are outrageous: “Blest are you poor; blest are you who hungerand weep; blest will you be when men hate, ostracize and insult you for my sake.” “Love your enemies” … “Do good to those who hate you” … “If someone steals your coat, give him your shirt as well” … “Give to all who beg from you” … “Be compassionate as your Father is compassionate.”

It’s hard to believe. Is Jesus really serious about this? These outrageous statements: are they to be the foundation on which we’re to build our house, that is, by which we are to live our lives? It’s hard to believe: Jesus is really serious about this.

  • Laura

    What happened to the reflection on the gospel for today? The Memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows? This homily has nothing to do with Our Lady except for two points. She did build her life on God and nothing could shake or destroy her faith and Our Lady’s sorrow and heartbreak was holy. Her suffering was holy. Our Lady’s suffering and tears helped bring about the redemption of the whole world. When Our Lady said yes to God and brought baby Jesus into the world, it caused her a lot of suffering and a broken heart in the end, to do God’s will, but it never caused her to doubt God, even when her son lay dying on the cross. She never doubted God, even through her tears and suffering and heartbreak. Jesus gave his mother to us as he lay dying on the cross. Her love for him was a beautiful thing and his love for her was too, but the most beautiful thing of all, was that in the midst of this great heartbreak and suffering Jesus loved her and did not want her to be alone. He loved his disciples and did not want them to be alone either. He crossed the divide of his earthly family and gave his own mother, Mary to us, to all of us, to be our Mother too. We are never alone in our own suffering, tears and heartbreaks in life because Our Lady is our mother and she loves us as only a mother can. She understands suffering, tears and heartbreaks and we can turn to her for comfort any time we need her. We are never alone. Jesus loved us enough to share his mother with us too. She has enough love in her heart for the whole world.

  • Fr. Larry

    If you are not going to continue emailing the Homily of the Day at least post it on your website one day ahead. Most of the daily homilies are given at Daily Mass which is early in the morning.

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