⏰Saturday of the Twenty-fourth Week of Ordinary Time 2 (22 Sept. 2018)

📕1 Cor 15:35-37, 42-49; Ps 56:10, 11-12, 13-14 (R.v.14cd); Luke 8:4-15

May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you.

Bearing authentic witness for Christ requires a mortification of our body. Against the Greek philosophy which sees the human flesh as a prison for the soul and poses a threat to the idea of resurrection, St Paul teaches that this perishable body would give way for the rising of a glorious body at resurrection (cf. 1Cor 15:35-49). But the glorious body would be won by those who were able to give up this mortal body (cf. Matt 10:39).

It is important to note that giving up one’s mortal body is not only in the shedding of blood as the martyrs did. We can give up our mortal body by allowing the Word of God to take root in our lives. That is the essence of Jesus’ parable of the sower (Luke 8:4-15).

There are different conditions that Jesus noted there which makes it difficult for the word of God to take root in our lives. Some of us are affected by different kinds of challenges and persecutions like poverty, barrenness, inability to gain admission into school, unemployment, etc.

Even with all those, St Paul asks us, “What shall separate us from the love of Christ?” (Rom 8:35), and he encourages by his reply, “Yet, in all these [challenges and persecutions] we are more than conquerors through him who has loved us” (Rom 8:37).

In that your present difficult situation, I encourage you to borrow a leaf from Shadrach and his companions (cf. Dan 3:16-18) and say, “My God will deliver me; but even if he will not, I will not serve other gods nor reject my Christian principles.”

As you make effort to follow Christ, may he liberate you from all the forces that work against your progress, physically and spiritually. May his love never depart from you. Amen.

Have a courageous spirit and grace-filled and restful weekend. Peace be with you.

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