HOMILY: Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
A Welcoming Faith Community
Our commitment to Jesus is not all about radical gestures of discipleship. Our commitment to Jesus also entails being consistent in our faithfulness especially in the trivialities of our everyday activities, being ready to share our gifts and resources with others in the name of Christ. God has blessed each one of us in different ways – some materially, some spiritually, some in terms of friends, some in terms of talent, others in terms of opportunity. The use of these gifts is meant to help us glorify God and to grow in love for Him. Everything we have is not only meant to sustain us but also for us to share and spend in service of others. Consistency is built by regularity even in small things until it eventually develops enough to be applicable even in big matters. If we are tight-fisted when it comes to giving our loose change for a beggar, we will most likely find it difficult to give when it actually hurts our wallet. Those who practice stewardship as a way of life practice charity in all aspects of their life – whether insignificant and trivial to major decisions. They are not allergic to making sacrifices because they subscribe to the idea of “taking up one’s cross to follow Jesus”. (Matthew 10:38) Whoever wishes to follow Jesus must walk the same path of the cross He tread.
Jesus never withholds His love and mercy from anyone. As His disciples, we too are called to be ready to give of ourselves to those in need, whether, friend, stranger, or foe. We recall the words of Hebrews 13:2: “Do not neglect hospitality to strangers, for by this some have entertained angels without knowing it.” In the stranger, God visits us. It is only by being truly hospitable that we facilitate a real encounter with others. May we then be welcoming, most ready to open our eyes, our hearts to God’s loving presence among us.