THURSDAY, TWENTY NINTH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME
Rom 6: 19-23; Ps 1: 1-4, 6; Lk 12: 49-53
ROOTED IN FAITH, LIVING IN LOVE
In today’s gospel, Jesus talks about the division that his teachings will bring among individuals, even within the family. To illustrate it, he places the metaphor of fire to express the transformative and sometimes divisive nature of his message. This highlights the price to pay while following the truth and God’s precepts, which can lead to disagreement and division even among family relations. This passage pursues us to reflect on the implications of our faith and the probable challenges we may encounter for remaining firm in our beliefs. St Maximus the Confessor exhorts us, “In conformity with the philosophy of Christ, let us make of our life, training for death.”
“I have come to bring fire to the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled!” The fire symbolizes the zealous love Jesus pours into our lives. His task in the world was to ignite the flames of divine love in the hearts of the faithful, that which brings us closer to God and to others. The fire burns away our sins and purifies our souls. This encourages us to be radical disciples of Jesus. Jesus continues, “Do you think that I have come to bring peace to the earth? No, I tell you, but rather division.” In this verse, Jesus acknowledges all will not, always willingly, accept his message. One who lives according to His message will always be seen as a threat by those who wish to live in the darkness of sin. This distinction will be the cause of division among individuals.
Living our faith according to Jesus’ teachings may not be easy. For it expects us to love others selflessly even those who dislike us. Let us ask the Lord to give us grace to embrace divine love and respond to his call in courage and faith. Pray that we may have sufficient strength to face the challenges and choose Christ above all else, even in the case of possible divisions.
Response: Blessed the man who has placed his trust in the Lord.
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