February 7, 2018
Wednesday of the Fifth Week in Ordinary Time
The Gospel Today
Jesus summoned the crowd again and said to them,
“Hear me, all of you, and understand.
Nothing that enters one from outside can defile that person;
but the things that come out from within are what defile.”
When he got home away from the crowd
his disciples questioned him about the parable.
He said to them,
“Are even you likewise without understanding?
Do you not realize that everything
that goes into a person from outside cannot defile,
since it enters not the heart but the stomach
and passes out into the latrine?”
(Thus he declared all foods clean.)
“But what comes out of the man, that is what defiles him.
From within the man, from his heart,
come evil thoughts, unchastity, theft, murder,
adultery, greed, malice, deceit,
licentiousness, envy, blasphemy, arrogance, folly.
All these evils come from within and they defile.”
Reflection (Sem. Alfredo O. Dimaano, Jr.)
Jesus challenged the tradition of the elders of the Jews regarding the laws on what not to eat. He said that what is more important is what comes out of the heart that defiles us.
What should we feed our hearts with? Let me suggest three things.
First, the Word of God. We can learn of the will of God and His ways through the Scriptures. St. Jerome said, “Ignorance of the Scriptures is ignorance of God.” When we feed on His Word, we allow God to direct our steps.
Second, the Sacraments, especially the Eucharist. It is a great challenge for us Catholics who receive the Body and Blood of Christ. Receiving His should nourish our hearts leading us to conversion – to be more forgiving, more loving, more compassionate.
Third, doing good deeds.Actions speak louder than words. What is in the heart must manifest in through the good works that we do. It is true witnessing.
Everyday, there’s so much concerns on our plate. Nevertheless, when we feed on Christ, the Living Bread Himself, our hearts become undefiled. Life without Jesus is like an empty plate. Amen.