Liturgical Colour : White
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today we listen about the fulfillment of the Law and the prophecies of the prophets and messengers of God in Jesus, which He Himself proclaimed as He read from the very prophecy of Isaiah at the synagogue of His hometown of Nazareth. In Jesus God had made manifest His love, which entered this world and dwells among us even now, for Christ is in us, and we live in Him, all of us who put our faith to Him and believe in Him.
But if we read later on what happened after Jesus had proclaimed Himself as the Messiah, we would find out that His own townspeople, His own neighbours rejected Him, as they were too fixated on their own ego and human desires, thinking that because they knew Him who had lived and dwelled among them for a long time, then they had the right to judge who He was.
They thought of Him as a mere carpenter’s Son, and being in the family of a carpenter, they thought lowly of Him. In their minds, they thought, how could this mere Carpenter be the Messiah or be the One to bring the salvation of all mankind? They thought that because they saw Him doing menial job of a carpenter, cutting the logs and making furnitures, then they got the right to judge His character.
But they were wrong, as it is the same too for many of us, as we are often so blinded by our imperfect human perceptions, biased by our flawed sense of judgment, biased by our desires and even greed, and biased by our upbringing and the varied influences of the world. How often is it that we are jealous of what others have and we do not have with us? How often is it that we crave what others have, wishing that we have them too, be it by force or other means?
Brethren in Christ, we often do not realise God’s presence among us and within us, indeed because we are often selfish and thinking only about ourselves and nothing else. We are too caught up with the concerns of this world to even notice about the Lord working His subtle works in our world, and among us all. Remember, that God is Love, and Jesus is the manifestation of that great love which He has for us. Even though He is no longer physically in the world because He ascended into heaven, but His love is still with us and is still present with us.
And the essence of His love is still with us too, even though He has ascended to heaven, but because He has given us His Body to eat and His Blood to drink, to all of us who believe in Him, and to all of us who have accepted Him as our Lord and Saviour, we have received Him, His Real Presence and True Body and Blood into ourselves. As such, we have the Lord and His love dwelling in us.
We should therefore be conscious of this love which God had shown us through Christ. We must not be like the people of Nazareth who were indifferent and even openly hostile against Him for they were blinded by their own ego, by their own prejudice and jealousy. We must not follow their examples, and instead we all must be humble, knowing how much love God has poured unto us, even though we are sinners, wicked and unworthy.
This season of Christmas, which we still celebrate even today, is a season of celebration of God’s love for us all, which was made fully and completely real and concrete, through the loving entry of Himself, through the Son, into the world, and His birth at Bethlehem, as a humble Baby, the One who would change the world and all of us forever.
For Christ calls us, even now, just as He had done so often in the past, to repent and change our sinful ways. He has lovingly sacrificed Himself and offered Himself as the perfect oblation and offering to free us forever from sin and its consequences, but this can only happen if we too accept what He has done for us and recognise what He has done for us. Thus we have to learn to recognise Christ present within us and around us, by knowing His love, understanding it and applying it in our own lives.
God has given us all love, by sharing it through His Son, who is with us, and this love needs to be shared with one another. If we keep this love within ourselves, then it will wither and be gone, but if we share it, it will grow stronger and ever stronger. Thus, brothers and sisters in Christ, let us all share our love with one another, living our lives filled with faith, faith in God’s love. May Almighty God be our guide and our strength, so that through us all, He may call many more peoples of many nations to be reunited with Himself. God bless us all. Amen.
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