✝️ REFLECTION CAPSULES – Jan 15, 2023: Sunday

“Listening to God’s Will; living a Life of Holiness; letting the light of His Love to shine”

(Based on Is 49:3, 5-6, 1 Cor 1:1-3 and Jn 1:29-34 – 2nd Sunday in Ordinary Time, Cycle C)

Six-year-old Johny made a trip to some European countries with his parents.

On returning back to the Catechism classes, his teacher asked him about his experiences.

And Johny said, “I loved all the churches in Europe – they are so many and they are so beautiful!
They have so many glass paintings on the windows of these bog churches of many saints!”

On hearing the word, “Saint”, the teacher asked Johny: “So tell me, who is a saint?”

And Johny, recollecting those glass paintings on the Church windows said:
“A saint is someone, who allows the Light of the Lord to pass through!”

That’s a beautiful description of a Saint, isn’t it?

One who allows the Light of the Lord to pass through!

The Liturgy of the Day invites each of us to allow the Light of the Lord to pass through…
… and become a light – a witness – of God’s Love to the world!

The First Reading (Is 49:3, 5-6) is one of the Four Servant Songs in the Book of Isaiah, about Jesus, the Messiah. (The other three – Is 42:1-9, 50:4-9, 52:13-53:12).

The Servant is named Israel (Is 49:3)

And elsewhere, the nation of Israel, is called the servant of the Lord (Is 41:8-9, 44:1-2, 21; 45:4; 48:20).

But Israel failed in its vocation.

This title of the “Servant of the Lord” is, however, faithfully lived by Jesus…
… who is shown to be the one faithful Israelite (Mt 12:15-21, Phil 2:6-8).

This title is later also given to those who make up God’s reconstituted Israel – all those who follow Jesus!

Each of us is thus invited to be “the light to the nations, that His Salvation may reach to the ends of the earth!” (Cf. Is 49:6)

St Paul beautifully shows this way to be the light to the nations: By doing His Will and living a Holy Life!

St Paul understood the depth of his vocation by identifying himself with the Will of God…
… “Paul, called to be an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God…” (1 Cor 1:1)
He also invites the people of Corinthians to live a sanctified life…
… “to the church of God that is in Corinth, to those who are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints…” (1 Cor 1:2)

When we do the Will of God in our lives and live a holy life, we allow God’s light to shine through us

When doing what God wants becomes the first priority for us, we become His Authentic Witnesses!

This is what we find St John the Baptist doing in the Gospel: Following the Will of God, he takes up this mission and duty of “being a light – a witness!”

“The next day John saw Jesus coming towards him and declared, ‘Here is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! This is he of whom I said, “After me comes a man who ranks ahead of me because he was before me.” (Jn 1:29-30)

Jesus would later testify to this fact when He tells about John the Baptist:
“He was a burning and shining lamp…” (Jn 5:35)

Our Christian lives are to be lived…
… by seeking and doing God’s Will!
… by living a holy life!

It is this transparency and openness to the Will of God that will help us to allow the Light of the Lord to pass through…
… and become a light – a witness – of God’s Love to the world!

May our prayer be, like the words of that beautiful hymn to our Blessed Mother:
“Mamma Mary, help me be open
To let the Light shine through me

Mamma Mary, teach me obedience,
Make me transparent like You!”

God Bless! Live Jesus!


Discovering the beauty of the Catholic Church through the Catechism
THE ANOINTING OF THE SICK – ITS FOUNDATIONS IN THE ECONOMY OF SALVATION

The man of the Old Testament lives his sickness in the presence of God.
It is before God that he laments his illness, and it is of God, Master of life and death, that he implores healing.
Illness becomes a way to conversion; God’s forgiveness initiates the healing.
It is the experience of Israel that illness is mysteriously linked to sin and evil, and that faithfulness to God according to his law restores life: “For I am the Lord, your healer.”
The prophet intuits that suffering can also have a redemptive meaning for the sins of others.

Finally Isaiah announces that God will usher in a time for Zion when he will pardon every offense and heal every illness. (CCC #1502)

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