TUESDAY, TWENTY EIGHTH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME
Memorial of Saint Ignatius of Antioch
Rom 1: 16-25; Ps 19: 2-5; Lk 11: 37-41
WASHING INSIDE OUT
We teach our children good manners and how to behave right from a young age so that as the child grows, he/she can differentiate and discern what is good and bad and make the right decisions in life. In the gospel, we see that the Pharisees and the religious teachers strictly followed rules laid down by men. Jesus on the other hand did not follow these rules literally but observed the underlying meaning of it – and this enraged the Pharisees.
Jesus preached in the sermon on the Mount (Mt 6:3-4), “When you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” It simply means that we should not draw attention to our giving. Jesus speaks of an interior spirituality and the inner goodness of people. No matter how much we clean the outside of our body or how organized we are. What matters the most is the good acts or mannerisms of a person. Jesus asks us to be charitable, to surrender ourselves and to render our service to others in whatever way possible.
Remember that Jesus never said anything without the desire for change and growth among His people. We tend to put in a lot of effort and time in looking beautiful to others but what God sees is our heart. He wants us to have a pure heart and soul. A place where he can dwell within us. The law the Pharisees followed laid down how much water should be used for washing oneself before meals, the utensils to be used, the order to be followed and they considered it sinful to omit a single detail. That is why Jesus tells them and us to pay the same minute attention in cleaning our hearts from sin, evil, and greed, and cleansing them with pure actions and kind words, in reaching out to the needy and spreading joy and happiness to all those around.
Response : The heavens declare the glory of God.
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