Readings for Friday December 10, 2010
First Reading: Isaiah 48:17-19
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 1
Gospel: Matthew 11:16-19
Jesus said to the crowds: “To what shall I compare this generation? It is like children who sit in marketplaces and call to one another, ‘We played the flute for you, but you did not dance, we sang a dirge but you did not mourn.’ For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they said, ‘He is possessed by a demon.’ The Son of Man came eating and drinking and they said, ‘Look, he is a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners.’ But wisdom is vindicated by her works.” (Mt. 11:16-19)
They played their flutes, but you did not dance, they sang a dirge but you did not mourn. These are some of the words that we hear in today's gospel. Jesus compares this generation to children at the market place. He then goes straight into the things that people were saying about John the Baptist and Jesus as well. At first glance this can be a very confusing passage; but what I immediately started thinking about was the demands of the world. There are so many times that we feel pressure from those around us to "dance" and "mourn." The world tells us to relax and join in the fun, and to just be like everyone else. John the Baptist did things God's way, and he was labeled as possessed. Jesus went about fulfilling His mission, and He was labeled as a glutton and drunkard. When we choose to go against the current of our culture, we can expect some resistance and some name calling. But if we hold tight to Christ, we can swim against any current the world throws at us.
In the first reading from Isaiah today, we are told; "I, the LORD, your God, teach you what is for your good, and lead you on the way you should go. If you would hearken to my commandments, your prosperity would be like a river, and your vindication like the waves of the sea." (Is. 48:17-18) It is God that we should strive to follow and listen to, not the world.
Father above, we thank you and praise you for the gift of this day. Lord, thank you for all that you bless us with and all that you do. Lord, help us to remember that all good things come from you, and that we are your children. Lord, even though it can be very difficult to run this race of life, we know with you that all things are possible. Give us the strength and perseverance to continue on not matter what the costs. We ask this all through Christ our Lord. Amen.