Tuesday, 4 January 2022 : Tuesday after the Epiphany (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today we listened to the words of the Lord in the Scriptures speaking to us about the love that God has shown us all so generously in caring and providing for us, and how then each and every one of us should dedicate ourselves to love Him in the same way as well, and how we should also love one another, our fellow men, in the manner that God had loved us so dearly.

In our first reading today, we heard from the Epistle of St. John in which the Apostle spoke of how each and every one of us ought to learn to love, and that love comes from God, for He Himself has sent His love into this world. The love of God has been made manifest in our midst, in the appearing of His Son, Jesus Christ, Our Lord and Saviour, that is the Love of God made manifest and dwelling amongst us in this world. God’s love through His Incarnation is no longer intangible.

That is the essence of our Christmas celebrations that we have carried out all these while. Christmas is the celebration of God’s love incarnate, as He came into this world and assuming our human existence in the flesh, the Son of God and the Divine Word Incarnate, born as the Son of Man through Mary, His mother. God revealed His love to us and made Himself approachable, that His love is now tangible and reachable for us when once we have been sundered away from His love and grace.

While we are still sinners, God loves each and every one of us just as He has always done since the very beginning. Even though our first ancestors had disobeyed Him and He could have crushed and destroyed them by the power of His will alone, His love for us all, and the love being the reason why He created us in the first place, is why we have been spared from immediate annihilation and damnation. Instead, God gave us all the opportunity to repent from our sins and to be reconciled to Him. He has repeatedly provided us the guidance and help so that we may find our way to Him.

In our Gospel passage today, we then heard how God fed His beloved ones, as we heard in the famous miracle of the Lord Jesus feeding five thousand men and many others with just five loaves of bread and two fishes. The Lord was teaching all those people who came to Him from the towns and the villages, who all went to the wilderness where the Lord was often teaching and doing His works. But as they all had no food to eat and were starving, the Lord had pity on them and told His disciples to find food to feed them.

The disciples said that it was not possible to find enough food to feed the whole large multitudes of the people that numbered at least five thousand men and not counting even the women and children, many of whom were travelling along the men. But God reassured His people, the disciples and also all of us through what He did, as He took the five loaves and two fishes present there and after blessing them, breaking them and miraculously providing enough food for all the assembled people with lots to spare, twelve whole baskets in all.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, often times we have to understand just how stubborn we can be in continuing with our rebellious and wicked actions and deeds, in disregarding and ignoring the most generous love that God has showered upon us. He has loved us so much and has always been kind to us, no matter what. He has loved us from the very beginning and showed it to us in so many ways, that it is truly inconceivable for us not to love Him back.

Yet, that is exactly what we have often done, brothers and sisters. We prefer to stay with sin and the devil rather than to follow the Lord and trust in Him. We prefer to walk in the path of sin and evil rather than to walk in the light that God has shown us. We disobeyed Him and betrayed Him again and again, and in the end, God still extended His love and kindness, His generous compassion and mercy towards us. Through His Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ, we have seen the love and compassion of God manifested before us, and we should doubt Him no longer.

May the Lord, our loving God, continue to watch over us and protect us, and may He continue to encourage and strengthen us that we may grow ever stronger in faith and draw ever closer to Him and His ever generous love. Amen.

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