Feb 17 2019 Reflection
Sunday 17 February 2019
First Reading: JER 17:5-8
Blessed are they who hope in the Lord.
PS 1:1-2, 3, 4 AND 6
Second Reading: 1 COR 15:12, 16-20
Gospel Reading: LK 6:17, 20-26
Today’s Note: Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Jesus came down with the twelve
and stood on a stretch of level ground
with a great crowd of his disciples
and a large number of the people
from all Judea and Jerusalem
and the coastal region of Tyre and Sidon.
And raising his eyes toward his disciples he said:
“Blessed are you who are poor,
for the kingdom of God is yours.
Blessed are you who are now hungry,
for you will be satisfied.
Blessed are you who are now weeping,
for you will laugh.
Blessed are you when people hate you,
and when they exclude and insult you,
and denounce your name as evil
on account of the Son of Man.
Rejoice and leap for joy on that day!
Behold, your reward will be great in heaven.
For their ancestors treated the prophets in the same way.
But woe to you who are rich,
for you have received your consolation.
Woe to you who are filled now,
for you will be hungry.
Woe to you who laugh now,
for you will grieve and weep.
Woe to you when all speak well of you,
for their ancestors treated the false
prophets in this way.”
Blessed are you who are poor. (Luke 6:20)
Who actually wants to embrace a life of poverty, mourning, and hunger? Who actually believes that poverty is the way to blessing and happiness? Jesus does, because that’s the way he lived, and it’s the way he wants all of us to live as well.
Deep down, we all know that money doesn’t make people happy. There are plenty of miserable millionaires. Rich or poor, it’s good relationships that make people happy. And what could be a more important relationship than our relationship with God? No wonder Jesus was so happy! He had an unbroken relationship with his heavenly Father.
Jesus didn’t restrict his vision to the world around him. He also kept his eyes fixed on his heavenly Father. With his heart lifted up to God’s presence and his mind filled with truth by the Holy Spirit, Jesus was able to look at life clearly and joyfully. He wasn’t bound by money or by the desire for a problem-free life where he always got his way. He was happy just knowing his Father and following his Father’s will.
Jesus gave us the beatitudes to teach us the secret of happiness. He knows that prosperous sinners are miserable people, however much the world envies them. The world cannot see the emptiness of a heart that is devoid of God’s love. It’s important to know that Jesus isn’t against money itself. He only wants us to set goals that go far beyond the accumulation of wealth.
Jesus once told his disciples that he had “food” that they knew nothing about and that this “food” was to do his Father’s will (John 4:32, 34). As we learn how to keep our minds fixed on the promises of God, we too will discover the secret to Jesus’ peace and happiness. By following in Jesus’ footsteps, we can know the same happiness he knew—the same happiness that fills all the saints and angels in heaven.
“Jesus, fill my heart with your vision of life. Teach me to be content with riches or poverty, with good times and bad. Lord, give me only your love!”