Fourth Sunday of Ordinary Time

The Introduction 

Of all the good news in the gospels, the Beatitudes are perhaps the best news of all. That is, it’s good news for the poor, sorrowing, lowly, hungry, merciful, faithful, peaceful, persecuted and insulted among us. Those of us on the other side of the equation – we might call ourselves ‘those who count for something’ in the eyes of the world – may find them more troubling.

Jesus isn’t recommending that we all get hungry or persecuted, Suffering isn’t the point. But those of us who imagine we count for something in this world had better make friends with those who don’t count at all, since they inherit the earth and kingdom. We had better stand with the voiceless and powerless, we had better champion their cause and be their comfort. Because if we don’t use our every advantage to their advantage, how are we going to face the Lord who called the lowly his blessed ones?

The Scripture (Matthew 5: 11-12) The Beatitudes

When people turn on you and do all they can to make your life a misery; when they make false allegations about you and drag your name through the mud, all because of your association with me, you have really got it made! Kick up your heels and party, because heaven is coming and you will be rewarded beyond your wildest dreams! You are in great company, because they were just as vicious to God’s faithful messengers in the past.

The Reflection

It is easy to be familiar with something that you fail to see its true worth or beauty. We often need someone else, perhaps a visitor or a stranger, to point it out to us. The same can be true of our faith journey.

Where is God in all the busyness of our lives? Where do we find Jesus?

Do you have companionship to share with the lonely? Do you have comfort to share with the sorrowful? Do you have goods to share with the poor? Do you have time to share with the neglected? Put your advantage at the disposal of the disadvantaged.

Go gently on yourself and others!

The Commissioning

We go from here to be God’s blessing.
We will nurture our spiritual life.
We will comfort those who suffer loss.
We will affirm the humble.
We will search diligently for the truth-tellers.
We will find the compassionate way and live it.
We will be light in the dark places.
We will follow the peaceful way.
We will be ready to pay a price for faithful living.
You will be a blessing to those you encounter. Go in peace.


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