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Reflection for August 2022

(Liturgical Year – Cycle C, Year II)
Community Word: Life in Christ assures us of our heavenly inheritance
Order: “…be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come.” (Lk 12:40)

In life, there seems to be no end in searching for things that will satisfy us completely. We work to acquire the best and the finest that we can think of to fill our earthly desires. Yet, even when we think we have everything and after experiencing some moments of happiness, we still feel we want more and more, a never ending cycle of desiring and getting, but wanting for much more. But Jesus tells us to provide ourselves with treasures and desires “that do not wear out, an inexhaustible treasure in heaven that no thief can reach nor moth destroy, for where your treasure is, there also will your heart be,” (Lk 12:33, 34). God’s presence in our life satisfies all our desires. Our life becomes more pleasurable, satisfying, purposeful and filled with everything we hope to possess when we allow Jesus to accompany us. Our goal is to be with Him always as we journey towards Heaven, a life with Him for all eternity. God is the Treasure of treasures, the One from whom all blessings flow here on earth and in eternity.
As we do, we are reminded to be prepared for the Second Coming of Jesus, “…be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come,” (Lk 12:40), a call for us to prepare to meet our God. This month, we are given the opportunity to reflect on the ways we live our life in Christ to prepare us for our heavenly inheritance.
The theme for the 19th Sunday in Ordinary Time is – Life in Christ assures us of our heavenly inheritance when we remain faithful, prudent, and vigilant stewards, cautions us to maintain a close watch against the deception of the cunning enemy. The devil makes us believe that we have the right to freely squander the treasures which we consider our own – possessions and skills we have acquired. But the truth is that the Good Master places these material and spiritual gifts under our stewardship to be used to serve His people and glorify Him. The promise this week – “Blessed are those whom the master finds vigilant in his arrival,” (Lk 12:37) should inspire us to consistently follow the moral and obedient path, and to be ready to give an account when Jesus comes back at the end of times.
Life in Christ assures us of our heavenly inheritance when we fix our eyes on Jesus with perseverance, is the theme for the 20th Sunday in Ordinary Time. When we are in sin, our hearts and minds are blinded from seeing the Truth. If we are only focused on our own cares, we begin to follow the unrighteous path away from our Lord. Emptying ourselves from self-righteousness allows us to be filled with the Holy Spirit who renews our hearts and removes the blindness from our spiritual eyes, to see Jesus. We should never take our eyes from Jesus who brings our faith to completion as we persevere until the end, even as we endure human trials and obstacles set before us in following Christ. Whenever you are in need of fortitude, you can call upon the Lord so that “…you may not grow weary and lose heart,” (Is 66:18).
On the 21st Sunday in Ordinary Time, the theme is – Life in Christ assures us of our heavenly inheritance when we embrace His discipline and strive to be righteous. Christian believers may grow weary and faint under trials and afflictions caused by the remnants of corruption. Though we find that persecution inflicts suffering, this may also be a way to prune and purify us. It is said that the road to heaven is narrow while the path to perdition is wide. We must bear the pains in the name of Jesus and persevere in our faith. Thus, God corrects us like a good father who disciplines his children, and we must submit to it with patience that we will grow in righteousness, away from evil. The Lord is gracious and wise and He is only after our spiritual good. In this promise, He says – “I know their works and their thoughts, and I come to gather nations… they shall come and see my glory,” (Is 66:18).
Lastly, the theme for the 22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time is – Life in Christ assures us of our heavenly inheritance when we stay meek and humble of heart in all our ways. Humility is the foundation of all other virtues. Jesus demonstrated His love for us because He was humble. Though God, He was born in a poor manger, and though a King, He gave Himself to die on the cross for our sins. He came not to be served but to serve (Mt 20:28). Humility is also possessing the spirit of deference and submission. Jesus was totally obedient to the will of the Father and to His mother, Mary, and foster father, Joseph. In community, deference or submission to leadership may be difficult as members may not see the character of Jesus in them. Thus, leaders should lead the way in being role models like Christ. Being humble of heart brings a promise from the Lord: “Everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but one who humbles himself will be exalted,” (Lk 14:11).

Loving Father, to know, love and serve You are far above anything else in this world. Grant me the grace to turn away from deceitful idols and useless worldly attachments which do not bring fulfilment, but downfall. Help me find fullness of joy in Your presence, O Lord. Empty my hands from useless endeavors so that I may have more of You in my life. Allow me to become a faithful servant with Your heart of compassion. And grant me a greater willingness to receive Your holy discipline that I may persevere and run the race of faith to the very end, where I will find my place among the heavenly treasures in Your very presence for all eternity. Amen.


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