An very elderly priest was celebrating his platinum jubilee of his priestly ordination.
The 90-year old priest, during the felicitation program was asked:
“You have lived such an inspiring priestly life.
What advice would you like to give to the younger generation of Christians and especially priests?”
With a feeble yet firm voice, the nonagenarian replied:
” Just a simple formula…
Look to Jesus! Listen to Jesus! Learn of Jesus!”
What a lovely piece of advice, isn’t it?
>> Looking to Jesus…
>> Listening to Jesus…
>> Learning of Jesus….
… are simple yet effective means to follow the Lord, with deeper commitment and zeal.
The Gospel of the Day is this call of the Lord to follow Him more closely…
… and to introspect our motivations and motives in being a Christian
The Gospel passage presents three people who seek to follow the Lord.
These three, present before us…
… three aspects of hurdles/barriers in following the Lord.
1. A “comfortable style” of following the Lord
The first person comes up to Jesus and says: “I will follow you wherever you go” (Lk 9: 57)
>> But Jesus reminds him, “Foxes have holes and birds of the sky have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to rest His Head” (Lk 9: 58a)
This man had probably heard or seen the Lord…
… as a mighty miracle-worker
… as a popular preacher
… as a laudable leader
These were “comforts” that would be assured in following Jesus
>> And so perhaps, the man chose this “comfortable style of following the Lord!”
But the Lord prohibits from seeking Him for the sake of comforts alone!
2. A “convenient style” of following the Lord
The second person is asked by the Lord to “Follow” Him (Lk 9: 59b)
>> But he replies, “Let me first go and bury my father” (Lk 9: 59b)
“Bury my father” was a Jewish (Arabic) way of saying….
… one must stay in one’s house till the death of the father and settle the inheritance of the property.
The man was yielding into to conveniences in following the Lord…
… “when I am convenient in my family, I will follow You”
… “when I am convenient in my personal life, I will follow You”
3. A “distractive style” of following the Lord
The third person said, “I will follow you Lord, but first let me say farewell to my home” (Lk 9:61)
>> But Jesus said, “No one who sets a hand to the plough and looks to what is left behind, is fit for the Kingdom of God” (Lk 9: 62)
This person had the goodwill to follow Jesus…
… but was distracted in his motivation.
We need to introspect our motivations and motives in being a Christian…
>> Is my following of the Lord of a “comfortable style” …
… looking for only the comforts of prosperity and material riches…?
… being close to the Lord only in times of comfort…?
>> Is my following of the Lord of a “convenient style” …
… seeking to be with the Lord only when I “feel like”
… adjusting my relationship with God as per my needs and conveniences
>> Is my following of the Lord of a “distractive style” …
… easily straying away from the path with worldly attractions
… failing to do the Will of God owing to distractive habits and tendencies
The Lord longs to have us following Him…
… more sincerely and more passionately!
May we always….
… Look to Jesus!
… Listen to Jesus!
… Learn of Jesus!
God Bless! Live Jesus!