GOD’S WORD FOR THE DAY (based on Catholic Liturgical Readings) DATE: 2ND JULY 2017
GOD’S WORD FOR THE DAY (based on Catholic Liturgical Readings)
DATE: 2ND JULY 2017
THIRTEENTH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME
FIRST READING: 2Kings 4:8-11, 14-16
PSALM: Psalm 89:2-3, 16-19
SECOND READING: Romans 6:3-4, 8-11
GOSPEL: Matthew 10:37-42
THEME:THE TRUE VALUE OF A “CUP OF WATER”
According to Church tradition, a woman by name Veronica was moved with compassion when she saw Jesus carrying his cross to Golgotha. She moved towards Jesus and wiped his face. For this gesture, she was rewarded with an imprint of the face of Jesus on the veil she used. That piece of tradition is captured in the sixth station of the popular Catholic devotion known as the “Stations of the Cross”.
To follow Jesus here on earth is no honeymoon. It demands total commitment and comes with its own challenges. A true disciple follows in the footsteps of Christ. He or she gives up everything and takes up the cross. It is characterised by struggles and challenges. The journey of a disciple can be rough and tough. Consequently, to be moved with compassion to assist a disciple of the Lord in any way is to tap into the blessing that is connected to that ministry or apostolate. It is a spiritual investment that yields fruits in due season. Jesus puts it this way: “He who receives you receives me, and he who receives me receives him who sent me. He who receives a prophet because he is a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward, and he who receives a righteous man because he is a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward. And whoever gives to one of these little ones even a cup of cold water because he is a disciple, truly, I say to you, he shall not lose his reward” (Matt. 10:40-42).
The First Reading gives a beautiful example of the reward that comes with supporting the ministry of the Lord. A woman of Shunem decided to support the ministry of the prophet Elisha by providing an accommodation for him whenever his work brought him to that area. That act of compassion did not go unnoticed. Elisha said to the childless woman, “This time next year you will be fondling a baby son” (2Kgs. 4:11). The prophetic words of Elisha came to pass, and she was rewarded with the fruit of the womb.
Supporting the work of the Lord comes with a lot of blessings. As Christians, our primary occupation here on earth is to advance the proclamation of the message of the Kingdom of God. We are called upon to do this with all that we have and are. If ever you get the opportunity to support the cause of salvation, do not walk away grudgingly; it is your moment of blessing.
PRAYER: Eternal Father, you gave your best to me – your SON – without counting the cost. Stengthen me to emulate your example and to give my best to you whenever the opportunity knocks at my door. For the sake of Christ, I pray. 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).