THIRTY-FIRST SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME

THIRTY-FIRST SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME

jesus-good-shepherd-06Dear Brothers,

The first reading for today points us clearly to the Gospel from Saint Luke today, where we meet the tax collector, Zacchaeus. Jesus asks this tax collector to come and eat at his  house, and Zacchaeus promises that he will repay anything that he has taken unjustly and also give half of his belongings to the poor. That is real repentance!

The Book of Wisdom gives us the insight and understanding – all of us must seek to live wisely, because wisdom is the ability to discern and judge which aspects of knowledge are true, right, lasting, and applicable to our lives. Wisdom is a way to understand what really will give us the best life— particularly with relationship to God. Not all of us live wisely, but if we seek to follow Jesus Christ and set out on His path, then in time, we learn wisdom because Jesus shows us the way.

The second reading today is from the Second Letter to the Thessalonians.  The passage given us today is a piece of wisdom, telling us to be very cautious when speaking about the end of time. This piece of advice needs to be repeated in every age because there are always people telling us that the end is coming. This is always true, for sure, but we need not be alarmed about it. What we need is daily conversion of our own lives. If we are living in Jesus Christ, then it doesn’t matter when the end comes.

We return to the Gospel from Luke today and meet Zacchaeus, a short man who is the chief tax collector and a wealthy man. We can note immediately that Zacchaeus is not a proud man. Think of  this short man running ahead of Jesus and climbing a tree to see him. How undignified and comic! We hope that we might have this enthusiasm to know the Lord, to see Jesus. Jesus never turns people away.

We need to have this enthusiasm of Zacchaeus and the strength of character when we come seeking Jesus. Zacchaeus is ready to give a lot in order to follow Jesus. How much are we willing to give to the Lord? Are we willing to make fools of ourselves so that we can see Jesus? Are we willing to seek wisdom?

Father Jesus