This week the liturgical mood invites us to reflect on making an interior change. And by doing so, God’s mercy and forgiveness are bestowed to us. We can make that change through the life of unity and humility. Our individual and communal strength comes from these graces lived in friendship with Jesus, and like the name Ezekiel means, “Strengthened of God,” we, too, become strong in the Lord as a community of believers known as the Parish. Unlike the Jews in the first reading who complain that the Lord is unjust, we, as Christian disciples, must remain on the path of the Lord to experience his mercy and forgiveness. The Lord is merciful and forgiving, ready to show us the way and guide us along his path.
The Gospel this Sunday has a family setting. Mathew gives a story of the father with two sons. They both changed their hearts concerning their father’s request to go and work in the family vineyard. The heart movement of the first son was towards accepting the responsibility he had declined, while the second son’s heart movement was a change from the acceptance of the commitment he had made. Although Mathew is responding to his social situation in his community, he is still doing the same to us today and our social environment. Not only the Jews that needed a change of heart to accept Jesus Christ as the “Sent of God” and the “Strength of God,” but we too need to do the same even after our baptism, confirmation, and other sacraments. We still need unity in our homes, churches, and country. We also need humility because it is necessary to accept the gift of salvation. St. Paul also relates the Christian life to humility in the second reading by persuading the Philippians to be united and overcome selfishness, and learn from the humility of Christ who didn’t claim equality with God but became like us even to the death on a cross. We should, therefore, model our minds and hearts to Christ to make a positive change of heart. Let us embrace that path of unity, and humility, because faith is not a theory but a personal relationship with God who humbled himself to be with us, and for us to be in friendship with Him and fellowship with others.
Dear youth, relate with the character that changes the heart to do his father’s will. Listen to your parents more than the popular secular culture. Go to the life vocation that the Lord is calling and sending you. In obedience, take the responsibility of your faith and friendship with Jesus. He is merciful, kind, and forgiving even when you don’t get everything right. Make an interior change of life with total trust in him who leads you on the way, giving you love and mercy.
Christian Action this week: To renew ourselves and all things in Christ, we must feel small before God. (St. Pius X). Be humble enough to help and listen to those struggling due to covid19 or something else. Guide those who are seeking, and the lost, along the Lord’s path of mercy and forgiveness.
Joy and Peace.