TUESDAY, SIXTEENTH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME
Ex 14:21-15:1; Ex 15:8-10,12,17; Mt 12:46-50
BELONGING TO THE FAMILY OF JESUS
Who are the true family of Jesus? The gospel itself gives us the answer. Jesus says, “whoever does the will of my Father in heaven”. Does it mean that Jesus is belittling his mother? No. He does not. Instead, He holds her up. Mary is the first disciple of Jesus. She bore Jesus in her heart before she bore in her womb. She was there with him at Bethlehem, with Him in His public ministry and was also at the foot of the Cross on Calvary.
The family Jesus calls us to is one not based on blood relationships. The human family is not downgraded, but a superior family relationship is proclaimed. It is a true personal relationship with God the Father, a relationship that is spiritual and eternal. The family is based on discipleship to Jesus Christ. Every disciple puts Christ and his words first, before family and before self. He or she is interested to do the will of God and the family is based on doing the will of God.
All the baptized are called to belong to the family of Jesus because all of us have received the same call from Jesus. We might ask, but to what extent? It is like the parable of the sower and the seed. The word which is planted in our hearts bears fruit according to the labour and the nourishment we give into its growth. Mary nurtured the word of God in her heart and that word bore fruit in her life in plenty.
Today, the Order of Carmelites celebrate the feast of its inspirer great prophet Elijah. A man who was filled with zeal for the living God. He showed the people of Israel the presence of the living God among them through the sacrifice on Mount Carmel. As Elijah gave witness to the Living presence of God in the Old Testament, Mary and the disciples of Jesus gave witness to the living word in the New Testament. We the new Israel are called to follow in the footsteps of Mary our Mother and the disciples to bear witness to the word and become the family of Jesus.
Response: I will sing to the Lord, for he has triumphed gloriously.
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