Wednesday, Thirty First Week in Ordinary Time
Memorial of St Charles Borromeo, Bishop
Today’s Gospel passage opens with the presentation of a great crowd travelling with Jesus. As Christian disciples, we too march with Jesus to our heavenly destiny. Jesus always accompanied the people and taught them the values of the kingdom of heaven. To be a perfect disciple of Jesus is to follow him always. It primarily calls for a life of renunciation and sacrifice.
Life in general, requires a plan; it requires a setting of goals and striving after them with determination until we achieve them. So also, a Christian disciple is called to follow the Lord alone; by hating or rather by bearing a love for one’s own family and for one’s life, less than the love for the Lord. This discipleship becomes more radical in carrying one’s own cross and following the Master. In order to convey the message of renunciation, Jesus uses two examples; the first, a person planning to build a house; and the other, a king setting up for battle with another.
Renunciation of one’s possessions is of great value in the following of the Lord. In treading this difficult path, this ‘narrow way’, one is quite aware of one’s spiritual destiny. Following Jesus takes priority in one’s life no matter the quantity or the kind of sacrifices it entails. It is an ongoing activity; that is, it requires a perseverance to follow the Lord daily especially in times of challenges and difficulties. The joy of the person who renounces everything in order to follow him is multiplied manyfold.
Our journey with Jesus reaches its fulfilment when we centre our life on him. Our family ties, our love for our own life and the joys and comforts that this world provides, can sometimes be hindrances in this journey of discipleship. As Jesus teaches us today, it is in the renouncing of all possessions that we become his true disciples. May St Charles Borromeo intercede for us that we may become good Christian disciples.
Responsorial Psalm: The Lord is my light and my salvation.
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