Readings for Wednesday September 30, 2009
First Reading: Nehemiah 2:1-8
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 137
Gospel: Luke 9:57-62
And to another he said, “Follow me.” But he replied, “Lord, let me go first and bury my father.” But he answered him, “Let the dead bury their dead. But you, go and proclaim the Kingdom of God.” And another said, “I will follow you, Lord, but first let me say farewell to my family at home.” Jesus answered him, “No one who sets a hand to the plow and looks to what was left behind is fit for the Kingdom of God.” (Lk 9:59-62)
Think about the priorities in your life. Like most people, you probably have priorities like family, friends, work, church, hobbies, etc. But where does God fit on your priority list? After all isn't He the one responsible for blessing us with all the things in our life? The fact is that we all have priorities in our lives, but the sad truth is that not all of us have God as a priority. Many people may say that God is a priority in their lives, but do their actions reflect this? I believe that until God becomes a priority (the number one priority!) in our lives, then we will never feel fulfilled, we will never find our purpose.
In today's gospel, Jesus gives some "would be followers" a lesson in where their true priorities should be. He tells them that their first priority is to God and to building up the Kingdom, not to the earthly tasks that they have to complete. Now, I have to admit that this particular section seems pretty hard to swallow when first reading it, I mean it is not like these people are asking to go and take care of meaningless tasks first; one has no clue what he is asking, one wants to bury his father, another wants to say goodbye to his family. Even though these guys may have great intentions, their priorities are still mixed up. We may think that what Jesus says is kind of harsh, but it is the truth and the truth is not always easy to take in. It is clear that our first priority in life should always be Christ.
Now this does not mean that we only follow God and neglect the rest of our responsibilities. I know that when we place Christ first in our life, then the other things in our life will fall into place. When God is first, then things are put into perspective; we seek out His will, our true purpose becomes clearer, relationships begin to thrive, our total outlook changes. But God cannot work if we are not giving Him the time or importance that He deserves from us. We must remember as Jesus said, "No one who sets a hand to the plow and looks to what was left behind is fir for the kingdom of God."
Let's make sure that in our life we do not just say that God is our top priority, but that we also show it.
Father above, we thank you and praise you for the gift of this day. Lord you are so good to us, please forgive us for the times when we do not take time our with you. Lord, you know what is best for us and we know that your will is perfect, please help open our hearts and minds to you so that we will listen and obey as we should. We pray for all of our priests and religious and for their ministries. We ask this all through Christ our Lord. Amen.