It is 12th June 2020.
The desire to see the face of God.
The readings are from 1 Kings 19:9, 11-16; and the Gospel from Matthew 5:27-32.
When we have a symphony of our life and word, we are sure to have the theophany of the Lord. “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.” (Mt.5:8).
We all want to meet God or at least to have a glimpse of God at one time of our life. Our desire to see and experience God during challenging times of our life grows remarkable. “Man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart” (1 Samuel 16:7). But in reality, the longing to meet God is silenced by the noise and voices inside and around “for the tree is known by its fruit.” (Lk.6:44).
The question “What are you doing?” (1 Kings 19:10) is not about God. We all must have asked this question to God by now during this pandemic. But today’s first reading offers a new perspective to look at our life as we face unbearable life situations. The prophet is running away from those who wish to get rid of him and hiding himself in the mount Horeb. We are all now running away from something domestically, and globally. The pandemic will surely pass by doing its damages and loses more than we can recall and recount. The question addressed to us is to be answered personally. Something we are doing, and experiencing not allowing us to have the vision of God.
God assures God’s presence in an unassuming way.
Be not afraid. Everything that is evil and harmful are passing by. “Go out and stand on the mountain before the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.” (1 Kgs.19:11). In noisy rolling rocks, the wind, the earthquake, and fire are difficult to trace God but sacred silence we can face God. We all have a surprising turn in our life. God meets us in our life when we are least prepared. When we are afraid of losing our life and running away from a horrifying life situation, smelling death, sickness and pain, grief in our life, we will be hearing a feeble voice right from within each one of us by a gentle touch, a smile, a sacred silence, and cooling breeze.
In our silent sanctity that is secretly treasured for God in which we meet the others through our humble service. The divine presence accompanies us at the peak of our life situation. God never breaks us down but surely bends us low the way we respond to use us for the community.
The theophany of Moses and Elijah on the mountain in meeting God and reappearing with Jesus during the Transfiguration are so profound and a reminder that God reveals himself to those who are searching for God tirelessly. God wants to talk to us and desires to tell something to us during this pandemic. The noises of pain and loses are growing louder, we need to find a place for God to hear God speaking to us.
The responsorial Psalm pleads, “It is your face, O Lord, that I seek.” (Ps.27:8).
The Gospel warns all of us to safeguard our hearts and inner being from the corruption and evil of the world. No one will consume a poison just because it is for free. Yet many of us allow our hearts, minds and lives to be invaded and encroached by evil day by day with the materials, thoughts and actions that desecrate the sanctity we need to have. Lust is the fire, the earthquake, rolling rocks and the whirlwind dashing all our lives not allowing us to serve the humanity in truth and love. We all face it but do not want to deal with it and curb it. It is not time to give up but rather to fight back. Jesus clarifies in today’s Gospel that moral values and standards for women and men are same. Responsibilities in marriage and family are to be shared equally between man and woman in all issues especially sensitive and serious in nature. We all need to have a pastoral sensitivity in dealing with the challenges of marriage and family. We must never allow or promote blame-game sacrificing one over the other. May our families create a space for God and to have pace with one another to deal with the challenges we face today. May you find some solitude to meet God to serve reasonably around. God bless you.
It is 12th June 2020.