“May we grow in our following of God, by looking at people and situations in His style: integrating compassion with sincerity and love with genuineness!”
Based on Amos 9:11-15 and Mt 9:14-17 – Saturday of the 13th Week in Ordinary Time)
A little boy once came to his mother, saying, “Mummy, I am as tall as Goliath! I am nine feet high!”
“How do you say that?” asked his surprised mother.
“Well, I made a little ruler of my own and measured myself with it and I am just nine feet tall.”
The little fellow considered himself to be huge and tall…
… but by having a measuring scale that he himself had devised – which he had adjusted in such a way, that he would be made to look tall!
How often is our own styles of assessment and measure the same!
We make “our own” yardsticks to measure others actions, and to find a way of criticising others!
We make “our own” measuring tapes to determine the deeds of other people, and thus find ways to put down other people!
The Gospel of the day is an invitation to examine this our tendency of assessing others’ manners and conduct based on “standards and measurements” that are set by we ourselves.
· Do I evaluate the action of another person based on my own “prejudiced” mindset… or do I measure it with the yardstick that God uses?
· Do I critically analyze other people’s attitudes from my own “biased” perspective… or do I gauge it with the benchmark that God proposes?
In the Gospel, we see the disciples of John who come to Jesus with a critical query:
“Why do we and the Pharisees fast, but your disciples do not fast?” (Mt 9:14)
It is interesting the reason that the disciples of John use here, in order to ask put forward their question…
It would be something like this…
“We, the disciples of John… we follow our Master in leading an ascetic and hard life.
We fast often times during the week… we live a hard life.
Look at the Pharisees too… they fast twice a week, which is more than the stipulated requirement of the Law.
We engage ourselves in so much of fasting.
But look at your disciples…
They are only found to be enjoying life!
Who don’t they fast… like we do… ??”
They had perhaps made “their own” yardsticks to measure the actions of the disciples and found a way of criticizing them!
They had perhaps made “their own” measuring tapes to determine the deeds of the disciples, and thus found ways to put them down!
But the Lord asks them to change this their “yardstick” and “measuring scale” of judging other people.
Jesus gives an example of the bridegroom and the context of a marriage.
Marriage is the time of joy and celebration… not of mourning or being sad.
It is a time of feasting… and not fasting!
… a time of feasting on God’s tremendous Providence and Grace!
… a time of feasting on the Love and Compassion shown by the Lord!
The Lord makes a challenge….
… consider and evaluate situations from the “eyes of God” – in the way that God sees.
… assess and measure people in the “manner of God” – with the approach that God takes.
It is said that when God measures a person, “He puts the tape around the heart, and not the head!”
May we also grow in our following of God… looking at people and situations in His style:
… a style that integrates compassion with sincerity
… a style that incorporates love with genuineness
God Bless! Live Jesus!
Quotable-quote-a-day-with-St Francis de Sales (SFS) – “Have patience with all things..