REFLECTION CAPSULE – December 14, 2021: Tuesday

“Loving the Lord and being willing to make suitable changes, to give highest importance to His Will!”

(Based on Zeph 3:1-2, 9-13 and Mt 21:28-32 – Tuesday of the 3rd Week in Advent)

A man who was engaged, took his fiancé for dinner on her birthday.

When they sat down, he laid an elaborate box on the table – her birthday gift.

All the while they were eating dinner, she just kept thinking about this box – because it was a big box – and she wanted to know what was inside.

She could hardly eat.

The waiting to open the gift was disturbing her…
… but her boyfriend told her to open the gift, after dinner.

All she could think about was what was in the box. Finally, when dinner was over, she asked:
“Can I open the box now?”

“Yeah, you can!”

She opened the box…
… and pulled out a pillow.

“Oh, wow, I mean, this is a nice pillow…
… but it’s a pillow.”

She turned the pillow over, thinking that something was taped to the back.

There was nothing.

“Well, thank you!”

It was obvious she was disappointed that she got a pillow.

Her boyfriend, however, got up, took the pillow from her…
… and laid the pillow on the floor.

He got down on one knee, took her by the hand, and said, “Will you love me for life?”

The girl now totally gave up the pillow!

The pillow was no longer so important for her
Instead… the one who gave her the pillow, now became much more important!

Love for a person trifles every peripheral need and discomforts!

When you discover love for a person, you begin to go beyond difficulties…
… and seek to strengthen your relationship with the person.

The Gospel of the Day is a beautiful story of “willingness to make suitable changes, and giving importance to the person, in order to display one’s love…
… rather than being restricted with peripheral and external promises, without sincerity!”

The Gospel presents to us…
… the story of a son who – though initially seemed reluctant – but finally would overcome difficulties, and follow the words of his father
… and contrasted by his brother who fails to keep up his word!

The passage begins with the first son being asked by the father: “Son, go and work in the vineyard today.” (Mt 21:28)

And the son replying initially in the negative; but later repenting: “And he answered, ‘I will not’; but afterward he repented and went” (Mt 21:29)

This is contrasted by the other son – who was given the same order – and replied in the positive initially, but later would retract from his words

“And he went to the second and said the same; and he answered, ‘I go, sir,’ but did not go.” (Mt 21:30)

These two sons could represent our own attitudes to the Divine Will:
Failure to understand initially but later repenting and doing what God wants

An initial fervour to do all what God wants, but failure to sustain in this pursuit

The first son may have had his own reasons to refuse the will of his father initially…

… he was lazy
… he had some other commitments
… he did not give much importance to his father’s words
… he was too proud and least bothered about what other’s wanted including his father

The reasons could be anything

But the parable tells, that he had a realization…
… and that would make him do what his father wanted!

The Gospel explains this with a phrase: “… but afterward, he repented.”

Maybe, we too need to have this “Repenting Experience” in our lives in order to follow the Will of our Heavenly Father

In instances, when we feel lazy in life…
… “to repent” and to push ourselves with the Graces offered by God

In times, when we have other commitments other than the Kingdom of God…
… “to repent” and to bring back our first priority to do what God wants in our life

In situations, when we don’t give much importance to the ways of God…
… “to repent” and to remain docile and open to the Power and Providence of God in life

In moments, when our pride overwhelms us, and we become too cosy and careless…
… “to repent” and to bow down before the Awesome and Majestic Presence of God

It is possible that sometimes we get so occupied with the trifles and peripherals of life…
… that we fail to understand that “growing in relationship with our Lord” is the most important task of our life!

We tend to get more attracted to the “big box that allures us” …
… than to spend time with the Lord…understand His Mind deeper and to love Him more!

The Lord today invites us through this parable of the two sons, to become people…
… who not only pledge our words but our life also to Him!
… who not only make an external profession but commit with an inner passion for the Kingdom!

Yes, let us understand that “Love for a person trifles every peripheral need and discomforts!”

When you discover love for a person, you begin to go beyond difficulties and seek to strengthen your relationship with the person.

When we love the Lord, we also ought to be willing to make suitable changes, and give importance to His Will…
… rather than being restricted with peripheral and external promises, without sincerity!

The Lord, Who humbled Himself – as a boy kneeling on a pillow, desiring for love – asks us the question: “Will you love me for life?”

What is our answer?

God Bless! Live Jesus!

📖 Discovering the beauty of the Catholic Church through the Catechism

The individual bishops are the visible source and foundation of unity in their own particular Churches.”
As such, they “exercise their pastoral office over the portion of the People of God assigned to them,” assisted by priests and deacons.
But, as a member of the episcopal college, each bishop shares in the concern for all the Churches.
The bishops exercise this care first “by ruling well their own Churches as portions of the universal Church,” and so contributing “to the welfare of the whole Mystical Body, which, from another point of view, is a corporate body of Churches.”
They extend it especially to the poor, to those persecuted for the faith, as well as to missionaries who are working throughout the world.

Neighbouring particular Churches who share the same culture form ecclesiastical provinces or larger groupings called patriarchates or regions.

The bishops of these groupings can meet in synods or provincial councils. “In a like fashion, the episcopal conferences at the present time are in a position to contribute in many and fruitful ways to the concrete realization of the collegiate spirit” (CCC # 876-877)

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