Liturgical Colour : Green
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, in today’s Gospel, we heard the famous Beatitudes or the Sermon on the Mount, which our Lord Jesus made on the mountain before the people, listing all the blessings and fortunes which He bestowed on all those who have been doing all that He was praising and encouraging the people to do.
The essence of the Beatitudes is that as Christians all of us are compelled and indeed, obliged to live in the manner as prescribed in the Beatitudes. What our Lord Jesus told the people at that time during His sermon was not just empty words, but strong exhortation for them to live in accordance with the ways which He had shown them, and He even detailed out what a Christian should be like, living with the virtues of the Beatitudes.
First of all, a Christian must be poor in spirit, which does not equate to material poverty. Instead, the term poor in spirit means that we as sinners, weak and unworthy human beings, all of us ought to realise just how insignificant and sinful we are in our lives, and just how much we need to be helped in our journey towards the Lord. It is by being humble and desiring for our conversion, that we are poor in spirit, shunning all of our human pride and greed, which have become great obstacles for us.
Then, a Christian must also be gentle and merciful. There are in reality many Christians who have acted with violence and greed upon others, causing suffering and pain, by our refusal to show love in our words and actions. We slander upon others, backstabbing our relatives and friends to achieve our own objectives, wants and desires. We have not shown mercy to those who seek to be forgiven, and we keep grudge in our hearts and minds.
Brothers and sisters in Christ, these are not the traits of us as Christians. And if we have done all these in our lives, perhaps we should reevaluate the way we have lived these lives, and think of what we can do, in order to turn away from all those things, wicked and un-Christian in nature which we have committed all these while. We must be more loving, more gentle towards each other, and be ready to forgive and to let go if we wish to be forgiven ourselves from our sins.
And it is important for us Christians to be peacemakers, to be those who seek and desire for peace in this world. Unfortunately, many Christians do not show peace or support peace in their lives. Instead they caused divisions, conflicts, and a lot of anger and hatred between each other, by their failure to give way and by giving in to their pride, ego and human desires.
Brothers and sisters in Christ, peace is important, for if we are not at peace, even within ourselves, we will always be tormented and never find the peace of God. When we are always worrying about what we are to have today, what profit we are able to gain from our work and actions, then we will always seek for more, and try to exploit whatever opportunities we can gain, even if we have to step over the rights of others while doing so.
But remember, brethren, when we do so, we will constantly be hounded with anxiety, worry and even more lack of satisfaction. It is our human nature that we are always desiring for more and more, and even once we have what we want, we will not be easily satisfied, and we desire even more. And the more we want, the more we will end up clashing with one another, ending up in conflict, pain and harm.
Last of all, as Christians, all of us are called to persevere through the challenges and difficulties that will come our way as we live our Christian lives with zeal and devotion. There will be challenges and difficulties, even coming from those whom we consider to be friends, relatives and close confidants. There will be a lot of moments when we will be rejected, ridiculed, and even persecuted for our faith, but we must persevere, for the glory of the Name of our Lord.
Through our perseverance and strength, through our patience and faith, through our commitment and devotion, we shall find our way to the Lord, and we shall inspire many others to do the same as well. This is what we all need to do, brothers and sisters in Christ, as those whom God had chosen to be His own people. Let us all seek to be what the Lord Jesus had described in His Beatitudes, and strive to do our best to serve Him as He had taught us how to do so.
May the Lord bless us all, and continue to guide us in our path in life, so that in all of our words, actions and deeds, we may always be pleasing to Him, and are always worthy of His grace at all times. Amen.