GOD’S WORD FOR THE DAY – 24TH JANUARY 2017
GOD’S WORD FOR THE DAY (based on Catholic Liturgical Readings)
DATE: 24TH JANUARY 2017
TUESDAY OF THE THIRD WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME
(MEMORIAL OF SAINT FRANCIS DE SALES, BISHOP, DOCTOR)
FIRST READING: Hebrews 10:1-10
PSALM: Psalm 40:2,4,7-8, 10-11
GOSPEL: Mark 3:31-35
THEME: BROTHERS AND SISTERS OF JESUS
There are different reasons why people find themselves in the Church. Some are there by default – they were born into it and brought up with it and consequently perceive the Church as one of the socio-cultural institutions of human society and nothing more. Others are there because of the friendship they have found. Some too go to church to meet business partners (sounds strange but it is happening). There are many other reasons; however, there is a category of persons who are in the Church because of a relationship of faith they have with the person of Jesus. They are there to seek the will of God – to listen to the Word and do what the Word tells them. These are the brothers and sisters of Jesus Christ.
From start to finish, Jesus had one explicit purpose in his public ministry, namely, to do the will of his Father. The author of the Letter to the Hebrews recalls this avowed purpose of Jesus by echoing the words of Psalm 40:6-8 and relating them to Christ . He writes, “When Christ came into the world, he said, ‘Sacrifices and offerings you have not desired, but a body have you prepared for me; in burnt offerings and sin offerings you have taken no pleasure. Then I said, ‘Behold, I have come to do your will, O God,’ as it is written of me in the scroll of the book’” (Heb. 10:5-7).
Against this backdrop, one can perfectly understand the statement he made when he was told that his mother and brothers were outside looking for him. He said, ‘Who are my mother and my brothers?’ And looking around on those who sat about him, he continued, ‘Here are my mother and my brothers! Whoever does the will of God is my brother, and sister, and mother’ (Mk. 3:34-35). The intent of this statement is not to exclude his biological mother or biological relatives but to establish a new form of relationship in the Kingdom of God – a relationship based on doing the will of God and not on blood.
By faith, we too can become brothers and sisters of Christ. An authentic Christian is one who seeks the will of God in every situation and actualises it. Each day, we are faced with choices and decisions. Do we allow love for the will of God to inform the choices we make and the decisions we take? Seeking to do the will of God would necessarily lead us to prayer and there in prayer, we find God and our true self.
PRAYER: Lord Jesus, I surrender every human plan of mine at your feet and I ask you to give me your plan – not my will, but yours be done. Amen
Andrews Obeng, svd
DIVINE WORD MISSIONARIES
BIBLICAL PASTORAL MINISTRY
“May the darkness of sin and the night of unbelief vanish before the light of the Word and the Spirit of grace. And may the heart of Jesus live in the hearts of all people” (St. Arnold Janssen).