This past Sunday our priest gave a wonderful but difficult Homily.
The Gospel passage was from Matthew…
34 “Then the King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. 35 ‘For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; 36 naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.’ 37 “Then the righteous will answer Him, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You something to drink? 38 ‘And when did we see You a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You? 39 ‘When did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ 40 “The King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.’
41 “Then He will also say to those on His left, ‘Depart from Me, accursed ones, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels; 42 for I was hungry, and you gave Me nothing to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me nothing to drink; 43 I was a stranger, and you did not invite Me in; naked, and you did not clothe Me; sick, and in prison, and you did not visit Me.’ 44 “Then they themselves also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, or thirsty, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not take care of You?’ 45 “Then He will answer them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.’ 46 “These will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”
Our Priest broke this passage down in a way that pertains to my immediate world.
Do I give unconditional love to those who hunger for it, my husband, my children, family and friends?
When people thirst for acceptance and truth do I quench their thirst or do I hold back because they are a different religion, a different color, or have different ideas of truth than what I believe to be right?
Do I welcome the stranger into my circle of friends or family when they are different than me? Do I accept them even though they have different beliefs, political stance etc…?
When people are naked with vulnerability do I feel superior towards them, use that vulnerability to manipulate them or cause them harm?
When people are sick with addiction, mental illness, or lack of love, do I run away from them, ridicule them?
When someone is imprisoned with depression, home bound, or is in a prison of sadness and anger because of hurt that has been afflicted upon them do I keep my distance?
Our priest also said that we must see Jesus in everyone. This is so difficult. It is hard to see Jesus in the person addicted to drugs who is hurting themselves and their families.
Am I supposed to see Jesus in the people who harm children, who are not sorry for their crime and will do it again if they have a chance?
Is Jesus really in these people?
When the homily was over I knew I fell short on everything Jesus was trying to say through the Gospel.
I do pray for everyone, even those who do evil things, but even though I pray for them I don’t have the love and compassion in my heart for them. I do not see Jesus in them.
I want to see Christ in everyone, but it is difficult when I have trouble finding Him in me.
I don't have the answer. I know what Jesus wants me to do but at times I find it impossible. The only thing I know to do is pray.
I will keep this homily in my heart, pray about it and ask Christ for help.