The Gospel Today
Saturday after Ash Wednesday
Lk. 5: 27-32
Jesus saw a tax collector named Levi sitting at the customs post.
He said to him, “Follow me.”
And leaving everything behind, he got up and followed him.
Then Levi gave a great banquet for him in his house,
and a large crowd of tax collectors
and others were at table with them.
The Pharisees and their scribes complained to his disciples, saying,
“Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?”
Jesus said to them in reply,
“Those who are healthy do not need a physician, but the sick do.
I have not come to call the righteous to repentance but sinners.”
Reflection (Sem. Eldrick Peña):
“Follow me” these were the words Jesus uttered to Levi. When Jesus called Levi, he immediately left everything behind and followed Jesus. But is it that easy to follow Jesus? And what does following Jesus entail? Following Jesus would mean experiencing dying to oneself daily by going out of our comfort zones in order to choose the “better part”. We set aside what is easier and more comfortable to do to give way for what we ought to do.
To follow Jesus is to carry our own little crosses daily and offer them to Jesus. Following Jesus also means, responding positively to a “call” or “invitation” we have received from Him. In my case, I responded to His call to follow him in the vocation to the priesthood late in my life; but I have no regrets. For now, the only thing I could do is to savor the sweetness and inner peace that one experiences when he is in close relationship to the Lord. My only prayer is for Him to sustain me in my journey towards becoming a minister in His Church.
Everyone of us, regardless our state of life, is called by God “to follow him” which means to live our life to the fullest and to love more fully. We are all called to be witnesses to Christ through our life of love and servant-leadership patterned after Jesus’.
How have you responded to Jesus’ invitation to love more fully?