Scripture: 1st Reading: 1Tim6,2-12; Resp. Psalm: Ps48,6-10,17-20; Gosp. Accl.: Ps94,8; Gospel: Lk8,1-3
We live in a generation in which people many times enthrone their personal human opinions as the only true path to follow. This has led to a certain dictatorship of personal opinion. Many times, people pay lip service to or even outrightly disregard objective truths in favour of their personal ideas. This has not led to the enrichment of knowledge but has actually impoverished the advancement of the cause of man. Unfortunately, the word of God is not spared of this.
The word of God today cautions us to have a rethink. Against the avalanche of human opinions, the word of God presents us the reality of the purity of doctrine; the primacy of sound teaching; the fact that those who claim to be believers in Christ must follow the teaching that He left behind. In other words, the word that was pronounced by the Lord is the one that must be preached, not some fanciful human opinions. In other words, no one has the right to fabricate his own views and preach his own gospel that is different from the one that was preached by Christ Jesus.
People who preach their own version of the gospel often do so from selfish motives. These are people who exploit the riches of the gospel for their own filthy gains. This happens when people are never content with who they are and what they have. Against this tendency, the word of God states clearly that there is need for contentment with whatever we have. This is because none of us brought anything into the world and none of us will take anything out of it. The word warns against love of riches that makes one prey to temptation, ambition, ruin and destruction. It warns that the unbridled pursuit of wealth can lead one away from the faith, leading to great wounds for the immortal soul.
The word of God today is very clear about the true vocation of every believer: saintly and religious lives, filled with faith and love, patience and gentleness. The believer is called to fight the good fight of faith till the end. The vocation of each of us is to win eternal life. If we gain everything in the whole world but lose that one, we would have lost everything.
We see in today's gospel some examples of women who played important roles and put themselves at the service of our Lord's mission. They contributed what they could, our of their own means, towards the mission of our Lord. Their contribution was highly appreciated because they did what no other persons could have done to make our Lord's ministry succeed. They put their God-given endowments at the service of the gospel.
We too are called to use our endowments for the work of the gospel. We are invited to a rethink if we have allowed the love of wealth to becloud our vision. We are invited to reposition ourselves once again on the path that leads to life.
Let us pray: God our heavenly Father, your word is truth and life. It does not change. It stands forever. Give us your grace to enter into the mystery of its riches. Give us patient understanding. Assist us so that we do not in any way impose our human preferences and interpretations on the word of truth that you have given us. Amen.
May the Living Word of God find a true dwelling place within our hearts and souls today and always. Rev. Fr. Anthony Igbekele