GOD’S WORD FOR THE DAY (based on Catholic Liturgical Readings) DATE: 4TH AUGUST 2017
GOD’S WORD FOR THE DAY (based on Catholic Liturgical Readings)
DATE: 4TH AUGUST 2017
MEMORIL OF ST. JOHN VIANNEY, PRIEST
FIRST READING: Leviticus 23:1, 4-11, 15-16, 27, 34-37
PSALM: Psalm 81:3-6, 10-11
GOSPEL: Matthew 13:54-58
Blaise Paschal, a philosopher, is quoted as saying: “In faith there is enough light for those who want to believe and enough shadows to blind those who do not.”
The narrative space of our Gospel text is a synagogue in Nazareth-Galilee, the native place of Jesus. There in his hometown, his countrymen sought an explanation for the wisdom and miraculous powers at work in him: “Where did the man get this wisdom and these miraculous powers? This is the carpenter’s son, surely? Is not his mother the woman called Mary, and his brothers James and Joseph and Simon and Jude? His sisters, too, are they not all here with us? So where did the man get it all?” (Mt. 13:54-56).
They sought for an explanation not to strengthen their faith in him but to feed their doubts about him as one sent by God to them. They had enough reasons to believe in Jesus (his words and deeds) but they sought for a reason not to believe in him. The consequence was that Jesus “did not do many mighty works there because of their unbelief” (Mt. 13:54).
The chosen theme, “credo”, is a Latin word, which literally means, “I believe”. It is a call to take personal responsibility for one’s faith. Often, we take solace in the first person plural “we” and lose sight of the first person singular “I” dimension of faith. There are times when we allow the unbelief of others to cloud our personal faith in the Lord or we hide our personal lack of faith under the banner of the faith of others.
Look around you and you will find out that the Lord has given you enough reasons to believe in him, but you can spend your life looking for a “reason” not to believe in him. Unbelief in Jesus does not rob him of who he is; it robs us of who we are in him. God created us to be people of power, but it takes faith to unlock that power.
St. Thomas Aquinas, a theologian, is quoted as saying: “To one who has faith, no explanation is necessary. To one without faith, no explanation is possible.” Faith in Jesus is a gift that God offers to us. We have a choice – either to accept or reject him For those who accept this gift of faith, understanding is as clear as daylight.
PRAYER: Eternal Father, I thank you for the gift of your Son Jesus Christ. I place my faith in him and I am confident that with him to lead me, I shall not perish. 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).