Friday of the 20th week in ordinary time year A

Ruth1:1.3-6.14b-16,22       Mat. 22:34-40

Theme: Love is priceless

In the gospel reading of today from Mathew, in response to a question from a Pharisee and a lawyer to Jesus, about the greatest commandment, he said it is love of God above all things and love of neighbours. The law and the prophets are founded on these two commandments. Love is a wonderful virtue that is needed by everyone of us and also our society in general. In the world in which we live today, there is a serious need for the practice of love amongst all of us as children of God. If we all can practice the love of God and neighbor as directed by Jesus in today’s gospel, our world will be a better place than what it is now. When there is love, there will be growth, development, peace, joy, and happiness. This is because people will be selfless and be conscious of the good of others. The problem of envy, jealousy, bitterness, hatred, and disunity will not be found.

The love that we are talking about today is that which made God send his son Jesus Christ to come the earth and die for our salvation and Jesus willingly accepted it. This same love is why God is always willing to accept us back like the Israelites, whenever we are remorseful and come back to him. It is pure love, without any ulterior motive. We are all capable of expressing love and receiving love.

 However, the challenge we have is that our love is sometimes limited to an individual or a group of people, but that is not the kind of love that Jesus is presenting to us today in the gospel. Jesus is inviting us to practice a love that is not limited to an individual or a group, but rather open to everyone. Just the same way God allows rain to fall for everyone, not only those who believe in him. God gives us the necessary things of life free of charge, and it is for everyone. The air we breathe is free, rain, sunlight and so forth. If it is sold, many of us may not be able to afford it, that is to show you how much love God has for humanity.

We also see love in practice from the 1st reading of today from the Book of Ruth. As a result of the love Ruth had for Naomi and her family, she remained loyal to the end and refused to go back to her people after the death of her husband. Love breeds peace, blessings, and unity. Let us all resolve today to make an honest effort to practice it in our daily lives, in the name of the father and of the son and of the holy spirit. Amen. Peace be with you.

Friday of the 20th week in ordinary time year A, by Fr. Jude Ifeanyi Ifezime, C.S.Sp