8th Sunday in Ordinary Time Year C, 03/03/2019

Today’s readings urge us to draw life from the hearts filled with the goodness and teachings of the Lord, to live virtuous lives that bear sound fruit.
In the first reading the author uses images from everyday experience to highlight the importance of our words, suggesting that our value of consideration can be proved by our speech.
The psalmist speaks of the value of continual gratitude to God and also paints a picture of the person of virtue who is marked with firmness or determination. (Such a person will bear fruits while old and be full of sap, still green…92).
Paul encourages the Christians in Corinth to see Christ’s resurrection as the source of their hope. He also exhorts his hearers to persevere in doing well and working for the Lord. The same encouragement is made to us today and our endurance in doing good every time and in every place.
In the Gospel, Jesus also uses simple reflections on human experience in his teachings. Disciples must learn from their master and in the process become like him. Having warned the danger of judging others, he also states that just as a tree’s value is judged by its fruit, so the true test of human virtue is the way we live our life.
In this week let us prepare for Ash Wednesday and the season of Lent which is coming in three days. We can allow ourselves to become more aware of our blindness, our human fragilities that prevent us from bearing good fruits/ living the life of God in us. The period of five weeks will give us chance to pray more, exercise acts of self denial to make our souls stronger and conquer the evil that threatens our life of faith and community. It will be a period to overcome our blindness and become virtuous people. On 21st April, we shall all rejoice with the risen Christ and give thanks for the good/sound fruits of our lives and not rotten fruits.
The parable of the tree and its fruits draws us as Christians to want to examine the fruits of our lives during the coming Lenten time this year, with an open and discerning heart. Start now turning your mind and heart to Lent and make it fruitful season as much as you can.
Joy and Peace.