The Sermon for the 23rd Sunday in Ordinary Time

23rd Sunday Ordinary Time

Hating mom, dad, family… seems harsh. But one has to understand the term “Hate” within the context of Middle Eastern terminology:

  • Middle Eastern language has no words to express superlatives. They don’t have a word for “like.” They only have a word for love (or something positive) and dislike (something negative)
  • The concept also goes to the idea of a decision: Either I “love” (to choose) something or someone or I “hate” (do not choose) the other.

This goes to daily small decisions about going through the narrow gate or traveling the wide and easy road. If the smaller decisions are difficult, how about the difficult ones?

And yet (consider the Old Testament reading from Wisdom) it’s NOT about what we do; it’s about what God does. It is The Lord who “straightens out paths” and the promise that, if we “decide” for the relationship with Christ (entrustment and consecration), HE will cause and guarantee the transformation.

Not so much what we “give up” but how much of the stuff in our life are we willing to turn over, entrust and leave the responsibility for, to Christ?

And notice, even CHRIST doesn’t do it alone! He only does what the Father helps Him to do.

This we don’t worry about. We don’t pay attention to the parish/company/neighborhood gossip because we don’t have an agenda. Our agenda is “to do the will of the Father.”


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