TWENTIETH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME
LORD, TEACH US HOW TO PRAY
I n our first reading today, we see how the prophet Jeremiah was treated by Zedekiah, the King of Judah and the people of Judah as a whole. They did not like what he was saying to them, even though he was a prophet of the Lord. If you read more of the chapters in Jeremiah, you will see how the King ends up protecting Jeremiah, after he was almost killed in the cistern.
Sometimes we can behave like the people of Judah when we hear the word of the Lord or the teachings of the Church. If we do not like what we hear, we may choose to ignore it or we may choose to do something totally opposite. Sooner or later we end up in confession to tell the Lord we are sorry, because the Holy Spirit will prompt us to examine our conscience. We need to do what our second reading tells us, we need to keep our eyes fixed on Jesus, looking at what he suffered for the sins of the human race. We also need to listen to and live in line with Sacred Scripture and the teachings of the Church, because both are like the words the prophet Jeremiah spoke; their source is from the Lord.
Doing this may cause division or conflict in our own families, as Jesus predicted in the Gospel of Luke, but that division and conflict is for the Lord to resolve, not us. If we try to resolve it ourselves, the ones who disagree may turn against us. We have to ask the Holy Spirit to prompt such family members to examine their consciences, and leave the rest to God. The only one we can change is ourselves, with God’s help. Have a blessed week.
Rev. Robert Pope