⏰Saturday of the First Week of Lent (11 March 2017)

????Deut 26:16-19; Ps 119:1-2, 4-5, 7-8 (R.v.1b); Matt 5:43-48

In Deut 26:16-19, God emphasized what was already noted in Deut 7:6-8. That is the fact that he chose the people of Israel from the face of the earth to be his own possession. What was added now is that we need to work hard to remain united with him.

Being united with God promises good tidings from him. Consider the story of the Prodigal Son (Luke 15:11-32). When the son was away from his father’s house, he suffered untold hardship (Luke 15:14) but when he was reunited with his father, it was joy all over (Luke 15:22-24).

This was equally the case with the people of Israel; whenever God is with them, they are victorious (see Exod 14:25) but not so when they are separated from God.

God wants to be one with us. The question is, “are we ready to be one with him?”

Being one with him entails being perfect as he is perfect (Matt 5:48), and that is, by keeping all his commandments and ordinances (cf. Deut 26:16-19).

These commandments and ordinances are summarized by Christ as the love of God and love of neighbour (cf. Matt 22:36-40). Jesus added something a little bit tasking – this love must be blind to faults; it must be loving for the sake of God.

May he give us the grace to remain one with him in love so that his second coming to us would not be like an accident to us but shall meet us loving as he loves. Amen.

Have a joyful weekend with the Lord. Peace be with you.

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