Liturgical Colour : Green
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day we heard about the famous sayings of our Lord Jesus Christ on the parable of the salt and the light. Through that parable, Jesus challenged His disciples, the people at that time, and ultimately all of us, to be true and faithful disciples of God, filled with zeal and courage to do what has been expected of them.
He called on all of them to be salt of the earth and to be the light of the world. He challenged them by saying that if salt loses its saltiness, it would become useless and similarly that if light is hidden from sight, it is also useless as well. Thus, in the same manner, if Christians are to lose their Christian values, the flavour if their faith, and what distinguished them from those unbelievers, then how can we share in what God has promised His faithful ones?
This is the challenge and the reminder which God has given to us all His faithful ones, that we ought to consider them and take action on what we have been reminded with. We as Christians cannot be passive and cannot be ignorant of what we are expected to do for the sake of our faith. If we are to call ourselves Christians and yet in our actions and deeds we do not show it, or worse, if we do things that are contrary to our faith, then would we not cause scandal to our faith, to the Church and ultimately to the Lord our God.
It is therefore a challenge which Jesus had presented to us, to be a true Christian, and which means that we must love one another, care for each other without considering our own selfishness. We must go forth and show tender care and love to our brethren, and be genuine in that love. Love is what made us all Christians, for we believe in God Who is love, and Who loves us all with His heart.
Brothers and sisters in Christ, God loves everyone, and in particular those who have shown their faith in Him. In the first reading today, continuing from what we have heard yesterday, we heard about how the prophet of God, Elijah, who was on the run from king Ahab, went to the city of Zarephath and met a widow there. And through the will of God, He helped and cared for both Elijah and the widow.
He provided Elijah with a dwelling place and a shelter during his exile and journey away from those who wanted to persecute him. At the same time, God also fed him through the widow who made for him and provided him with the food and sustenance he needed. And at the same time, God showed mercy and love to the widow, whom He helped through Elijah, by providing her with flour and oil that would not dry up and continued until the Lord restored the rain over the land.
Elijah did not despair even though he was under constant persecution by the king and his allies, and he did not give up the fight even though at that time literally he was the only one standing up and indeed, dared to stand up against the king and the worship of Baal, the pagan god of the Canaanites that led Israel to sin. He preached about God throughout the land and even in the foreign lands.
And that widow of Zarephath showed her faith in God when she served the prophet of God, Elijah, by providing him with water and provisions, even when she herself was very short on food for herself and for her own son. The Lord called her and she responded with faith, and for that faith, she was rewarded, just as God rewarded the prophet Elijah for his faith and devotion.
They had shown themselves to be salt of the earth and light of the world, showing God’s love, grace and truth in a world which has been immersed in the darkness of evil. They have shown their light to many people, through whom they have called them to righteousness and grace in God. Not many responded well, and many refused to change their ways, but in the end of the day, through their example, many have been saved. Jesus our Lord Himself commended the faith of the widow of Zarephath in one of His teachings to the people.
Therefore, brothers and sisters in Christ, can we do the same as well with our own lives? Are we able to be truly faithful to God? Are we showing good examples of our faith to others and our neighbour? If we want to be true Christians and reap the grace and blessings of our Lord, then surely we have to show that we are true and devoted to Him, with all our heart and our mind, and be sincere and be genuine in our faith.
Let us all renew our faith to the Lord, and devote our time and effort in order to be ever more committed and be more faithful to the Lord our God in all the things which we do. May God be with us all and may He bless us in all of our endeavours. Amen.