Liturgical Colour : Green
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day we heard about Jesus Who was rejected by His own people, by His own countrymen, the people of Nazareth where He grew up, who refused to believe in Him, despite having heard His teachings and witness the authority with which He had taught them, and all the miracles He had performed in their sight and in their neighbouring areas.
They rejected Jesus because they had seen Him growing up since He was merely a small Child, apparently the Son of the village carpenter, St. Joseph. They thought that since He was a mere Son of a simple carpenter, a profession often overlooked and under-appreciated at that time, then He could not have done all that on His own. And thus they doubted Him, mocked Him, and even kicked Him out of His own hometown.
Such lack of faith astounded our Lord, and indeed, is something that certainly astounds us all as well. But in reality, if we look at it more carefully, let us ask ourselves, that in our own lives, have we been treating the Lord in the same manner? Have we ourselves not doubted Him and rejected Him, preferring to choose a different path because we find His teachings too difficult to follow?
After all, the world offers each one of us an easier path to follow. The path of the Lord is difficult, and yet, it is one that will yield a true reward in the end, and not the path of this world. In the first reading today, from the Epistle of St. Paul to the Hebrews, St. Paul mentioned and explained the Lord as a Father to us all. And like a father who loves all of his children, God loves each and every one of us.
But a good father is not one who loves all the time, and does not act in a manner that is necessary to ensure that the child is brought up well. A good father is not someone who pampers the children and spoil them, for fathers who do pamper their children and allow them to walk into the wrong paths are bad and irresponsible fathers. Good fathers care for the overall well-being of their children.
Thus, God Who loves us all His children will discipline us as He sees fit. And sometime it is hard truth and hard approach that is necessary. But ultimately, God loves us all, each and every one of us, all the same. It is important that we should realise this fact, even as we persevere through the challenging times and moments of trials. We have to seek the Lord our Father, and find our way to Him, and doing our best, we must strive to be holy and devout, as St. Paul had said.
And often that would mean that we should abandon our past ways of sinfulness. We must keep ourselves free from wicked paths and ways, and we must not fall back into sinful paths, but must make the effort to remain strongly attached to the Lord, and be righteous and just in all of our ways. We cannot call ourselves as Christians otherwise, because as Christians we have been made to be children of our loving Father, God our Creator. If our actions show otherwise, then it will be a great scandal and sin, for our actions do not represent who we are and who we should be.
That is why all of us are called to be true Christians, in all of our deeds and actions, in all of our words and dealings. Let us all show true Christian love and virtues in all that we say and do, and let us help one another to grow ever closer to God, our loving Father. Let us imitate Him in all of His ways, and love one another just as He has loved us all first. Let us all give our very best and put our complete trust, doubting Him no longer. We must not follow the example of the people of Nazareth. Do not let anything come between us and God.
May the Lord bless us all and our endeavours. May He strengthen us in faith, and awaken in each one of us the strong desire to love Him, and to remain forever in His grace. May God be with us all, now and forevermore. Amen.