September 10, 2014

The Gospel Today

Wednesday of the Twenty-third Week in Ordinary Time

Luke 6: 20-26

Raising his eyes toward his disciples Jesus said:
“Blessed are you who are poor,
for the Kingdom of God is yours.
Blessed are you who are now hungry,
for you will be satisfied.
Blessed are you who are now weeping,
for you will laugh.
Blessed are you when people hate you,
and when they exclude and insult you,
and denounce your name as evil
on account of the Son of Man.

Rejoice and leap for joy on that day!
Behold, your reward will be great in heaven.
For their ancestors treated the prophets
in the same way.

But woe to you who are rich,
for you have received your consolation.
But woe to you who are filled now,
for you will be hungry.
Woe to you who laugh now,
for you will grieve and weep.
Woe to you when all speak well of you,
for their ancestors treated the false
prophets in this way.”

Reflection (Sem. John Paul Adia):

This Gospel according to St. Luke reminds me that God is nearer to those who are experiencing difficulties in life. I can even say that God is more present in my life in times of difficulties. “Blessed are they…” Who would not be amazed on how Jesus delivers the word of grace to the people as He declares His love for them? The Gospel makes me see how He favors the poor, the needy, and those suffering and persecuted. On the other hand, Jesus warns those who are rich, filled, merry, and speaking well by themselves. He never mentions that these things are bad. But looking at the perspective of grace, I may say that the grace that is never shared is a way of killing one’s love. It should be flowing.

Life is grace-filled and wonderful. This grace is never been coming from us. As I reflected on this, I saw how my life was filled with graces even now that I am in the seminary. But before, I was not able to see this gift that God has given to me. I am unemployed, thus, I am not earning. I am far from my family, thus, I cannot be with them in times of sickness and struggles. I am a nurse and yet I cannot even take care of the health of my family. But this is a way of emptying myself. I used to ask God before the Tabernacle, “What more do You want me to give You or to do for You?” And the answer was enormously surprising, “I want the whole of you.”

The process of emptying is never easy. I even spent times crying and feeling discomforts because of theis. But at the end of the day, God makes me see that life is really grace-filled. As I am receiving God’s grace, I am inspired by the way on how I can share it. This is God’s love that I need to let others experience too.

My family, in a way, is stable. During my last visit with them, I saw how the grace of joy remained. They still experience difficulties, especially with finances but I never saw them lose their faith. Before, I would receive complains on my decision of entering the seminary, even face to face. But now, no matter how difficult life is, the grace of remaining strong keeps our family together as they see my seminary formation as part of sharing the grace that our family receives in our life. May we continue to share these graces and be blessed despite our difficulties. Amen.

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