GOD’S WORD FOR THE DAY (based on Catholic Liturgical Readings) DATE: 31ST JULY 2017
GOD’S WORD FOR THE DAY (based on Catholic Liturgical Readings)
DATE: 31ST JULY 2017
MEMORIAL OF SAINT IGNATIUS OF LOYOLA
FIRST READING: Exodus 32:15-24, 30-34
PSALM: Psalm 106:19-23
GOSPEL: Matthew 13:31-35
A child runs from the poultry farm with an egg in the hand and with elation screams, “Mummy, mummy, the hen has laid an egg. Should I break the shell and take the chicken out?”
The answer to the child’s question is obvious. Chickens do not come into the world by smashing eggs. Patience is needed. The hen would have to ‘sit’ on an egg for a period of time before it hatches. For lack of patience many have destroyed beautiful dreams and destinies.
The “golden calf” in our First Reading is a symbol of impatience. Moses had gone up the mountain, seeking the face of Adonai on behalf of the people of Israel. Meanwhile, the people who had been waiting for Moses for quite a while got fed-up and said to Aaron, “Come, make us a god who will go before us; as for this Moses, the man who brought us up from the land of Egypt, we do not know what has become of him” (Ex 32:1). Consequently, they abandoned the whole project of waiting and carved a golden calf.
When Moses finally descended from the mountain and saw the calf they had made, he threw down the two tablets of the Testimony in his hands, breaking them into pieces (Ex. 32:19ff). Their inability to wait meant they did not place much value on those tablets and the revelation therein.
When you wait upon the Lord and he keeps long in coming, what do you do? Do you take matters into your own hands and redefine how you want to worship “your god”?
A woman waits upon God for a long time for a marriage partner and when God delays, she makes a “golden calf” by snatching somebody’s husband. A man decides to wait upon God for a good job. However, God appears to be delaying so he makes a “golden calf” by indulging in drug peddling or some other form of corrupt business.
We can infer from the Gospel text, at least implicitly, the value of patience. By likening the kingdom of God to a mustard seed sown in the field, Jesus helps us to see the gradual process of the diffusion of the values of the Kingdom in any given space and time. It takes time for a mustard seed to grow into a big tree. This calls for patience.
Perhaps, you have also been waiting for quite a long time for Jesus (our new Moses) to ‘come down from the mountain’. You are longing for a divine revelation and intervention to fulfil your purpose and destiny in life. You have waited and waited but nothing seems to happen. The temptation to go your own way and do your own thing has become strong and maybe you are on the verge of making your own “golden calf”. Hold it! No matter how long it takes, if it is about waiting upon the Lord, wait. Do not walk away; it is a matter of time.
“For the vision is for its appointed time, it hastens towards its end and it will not lie; although it may take some time, wait for it, for come it certainly will before too long” (Hab 2:3).
PRAYER: Lord Jesus, I feel that time is not on my side but if you say I should wait, I will wait for I have placed my faith in you. 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).