Ven, 18 Set 20 Lectio Divina - Anno A
Is 55:6-9, Philippians 1:20-24,27, Matthew 20:1-16
THEME: THE LORD IS CLOSE TO ALL WHO CALL HIM
Isaiah speaks out; “seek out Yahweh while He is still to be found, call to him while he is still near.”
From this, it is clear all those who seek God will find Him and those who call Him, He is near.
The prophet, Isaiah, speaks of two ways of approaching God to feel and experience the presence of God. Firstly, it is seeking him and secondly, it is calling to him. He states that those who seek and search for God will find him and those who call him God will be close to them. We all know that the presence of God is in and around us but the question to be asked is, do we realize this fact and recognize his valuable presence in our lives?
In this regard, everyone is busy in his or her own activities in a day and instead of that, primarily, do we honestly strive to seek and search for God? Secondly, we have our own difficulties, troubles, worries etc...do we have our true confidence in him that he will make everything fine? in spite of being busy in all our activities? and secondly, do we have real confidence in calling to him?
And he further speaks about the thoughts and the ways of us, like "God's thoughts are not our thoughts and our ways are not His ways." If we reflect deeper, we will see that our thoughts may be selfish but God's thoughts are generous and our thoughts can be evil but his thoughts are pure, our thoughts may be cursing but his thoughts are blessing, our thoughts can go wrong but his thoughts can not go wrong, our thoughts may be unholy but his thoughts are holy and we may not help others with good intentions but God always does everything for us with good intentions.
“God never betrays one who keeps faith in Him."
II Reading :-
St. Paul, the apostle, makes himself as an example to the Philippian community that Christ will be glorified in his body, by both his life and his death. He notes that for him, life is Christ but then death would be a positive gain. On the other hand, to be alive in the body gives him an opportunity for fruitful work. Thus, this puts him into a dilemma to what to choose. We too may have the same confusion that whether we live here on earth or we die, we need to glorify the Lord by our lives. He concludes as, "you must always behave in a way that is worthy of the Gospel of Christ."
When we look into the way we behave it will tell us who we are and what we are. Our identity depends on our behaviour and it shows what kind of personality or character that we have. Based on our personality and character, our worthiness of proclaiming the Gospel of Christ will be evident. We need to examine how worthy we are? The Gospel of Christ is the main source of our Christian life. Every Christian is called to live the Gospel values in his or her life ardently. Thus, we are to bear witness to Christ and his love that he has for each one us.
Jesus narrates a parable about, "The kingdom of Heaven." He compares it with a landlord going out to hire workers for his vineyard. He makes an agreement with the workers for one denarius a day and sent them to his vineyard. As he goes out, he hires all of them who were standing idle at different hours of the day. Finally, as he pays them off those who came first thought they would get more than the late comers would. The landlord rather pays them all the same as one denarius. Those who thought that they would get more were upset and agitated. But the landlord replied them saying you are jealous of my generosity. I have the right to pay you and them as I like. Thus, the moral of the parable is, "the first will be last and the last will be first."
God has no time limit for doing good and being generous to us. But we may put him to test and go on troubling him to do what we want in our lives. We too have no time limit to go to him and to call on him. Therefore, we can do so at any time for he is always there with us and for us.
Especially at this time of pandemic, we are living a life of confusion, we are in dilemma, we are anxious, we are suffering, we are in pain and loss of our loved ones, we are in tension and above all, we are in the uncertainties of life.
What would be your answer if I ask you, is this Corona virus bigger than the man on the earth? And again, another question I would put it as, is this Corona virus stronger and more powerful than the one above? A strong believer would say a big ‘no’ and an unbeliever would say ‘yes’ but, in our hearts, there will be a voice saying in a husky manner ‘no, never'. Therefore, to some extent, many of us will agree with this husky voice, which is from within, because the threat of life and so-called ‘death’ is the same for all of us. Not only that but it is also because we have gone through experience for quite an amount and period and in fact, we are still going through this tunnel of suffering and pain.
How long it will last, we don’t know and none of us have any idea about it as well. Therefore, we all look for a way out and try to figure out what can be done or what to be done. Now is the time that we need to realize the presence of God among us, a midst of us, near us and with us.
“God can restore what is broken and change it into something amazing. All you need is faith”