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To build a dynamic Roman Catholic family of faith that seeks to encounter Jesus through the spiritual, Sacramental, catechetical, and social life of the Church. We strive to be the beacon of the light of Christ to all through joyful service and mission


August 7, 2022 – Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time                 

 

There is a strong dose of wisdom in those somewhat prosaic railroad crossing signs with the triple warning: “Stop; Look; and Listen.”  This can be readily applied to our spiritual lives, especially when it comes to the various sayings of Our Lord.

First of all, “Stop.” The sign makes it a command to traffic when it is soon to meet up with a high-speed train roaring at a road crossing.  Not to obey is to court disaster. 

For all of us striving to live as Jesus commands, there is a definite connection here with the usually frenetic pace of our everyday lives.  The fact of our constant movement frequently coincides with a desire that everything get done quickly. We rarely ask ourselves why.  So, for everything from the relief of our headache to the delivery of a refrigerator has to be speedily accomplished or else we become frustrated.  Maybe even angry.

A session with Scripture has to be done in a generally relaxed and composed state, or we will not truly “hear” what Jesus is saying. That means stepping off our imaginary treadmill even if just for a quarter of an hour.  Forget temporarily about your usual texting speed. That in itself can be the pause that refreshes. But only if it is a real pause.  So we stop.

Our railroad sign reads “Look” and “Listen”.  Of course the command applies literally to our use of the Bible. It is a proven benefit to our psychic well-being as well as our prayer life to notice the world of wonders all around us.  Wildflowers along a highway.  Clouds drifting in a blue sky that form a pattern. A toddler’s laughter.  This not to omit the sight of senior citizens full of joy at a summer picnic. Sunrises and sunsets. The seashore or the mountains we might visit can speak to us of God and occasionally a prayer of the heart like few others.  Conversations can convey more than the words we actually say to one another. We need to give our undivided attention especially when Our Lord says something like He does today: “Do not be afraid any longer, little flock.”

We know that we can sometimes be a bundle of fears. Radically unable to heed that pertinent warning “Blessed are those servants whom the master finds vigilant on his arrival.”  We have here both a warning and a formula for wise Christian living.

Lewis Sperry Chafer was an American theologian, who co-founded the Dallas Theological College with his brother Rollin.  Here he provides us with some good advice for living, especially when there is no railroad crossing sign available. Yet he still has us thinking of trains.  He referred to a friend who was devoting his time and energy in pursuit of an insignificant matter, and remarked, “He reminds me of a bulldog chasing a train: what’s he going to do with it if he catches it?”

God love you and give you His peace.

Reading I:  Wisdom 18: 6-9
“That night” is mentioned, which is the noteworthy night of the Passover, the beginning of the liberation of God’s chosen people from Egyptian slavery.

Reading II:  Hebrews 11: 1-2, 8-19 or 11: 1-2, 8-12
We all walk in a certain darkness toward our true homeland, but the road is illuminated by faith.  That is the faith that Abraham lived his days.

The Gospel:  Luke 12: 32-48, or 12: 35-40
St. Luke puts the so-called “servant parables” in the context of the Church.  A good servant gives service to the Christian community.  A foolish one may do the opposite but is the inevitable loser.

 

John Patrick Publishing, Co., Rev. Leonard N. Peterson. “August 7, 2022 – Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Reflections“. https://www.jppc.net/august-7-2022-nineteenth-sunday-in-ordinary-time/(accessed August 3,  2022)