It is 3rd March 2019. With this Eighth Sunday in Ordinary Time, we enter into the Lenten time of the Year. The readings are from Sirach 27:4-7; the second reading is from 1 Corinthians 15:54-58; and the Gospel is from Luke 6:39-45. Words just do not pop up from the thoughts alone but from the atmosphere of our hearts and souls. when there is no truth in our words, there is no fire in the actions. Except those who are sick, we all love certain amount of cleanliness. We would like to clean the back of the others spending all our resources always instead of doing some sort of personal and internal cleansing. Many are not even aware that we are competing with them. We are all too swift to speak and too slow to be silent. Some of us speak where there is no word is required. Most of have a sickness of speaking the wrong words to an innocent person. When our thoughts are polarized, our actions are fragmentalized. There is so much of cunningness, cruelty, anger, abuse in our words than having respect, peace, love and reciprocity in listening to the other person. Are we becoming extremely judgemental than charitable in speaking? Our character and personality are revealed through the manifestation of our words that we utter. However meticulously we modify and present the words, still we can spill the temperament of our souls unconsciously. Our conversations are the proof of what is going on within us. Words mostly betrays us. We must train ourselves not to praise someone without listening deeply. The Catechism teaches us (CCC.2478) “To avoid rash judgment, everyone should be careful to interpret insofar as possible his neighbour’s thoughts, words, and deeds in a favourable way.” The responsorial Psalm praises, “Lord, it is good to give thanks to you.” (Ps.92:2). St. Paul encourages us to work for the Lord because it is not going to be in vain. We become victorious by our actions not by mere words. “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labour is not in vain.” (1 Cor.15:58). In the Gospel, the Lord admonishes everyone not to be hasty in making rash judgments and displaying our arrogance. We will be known by the way we act and speak. We become blind and brutal when we have lost touch with charity and empathetic listening. When we are not good, we must not preach about how to be good. We cannot go on pretend and cheat the others all through our lives. Our words will surely betray us without our knowing. To be a disciple of Jesus, one needs to build the character within than to relay on flowery words that are showcased always. We must avoid by all means the double standards in our life. A positive and optimistic attitude matters for the work of the Lord. We display ourselves mostly by the words we utter and therefore we need to be extremely careful in speaking words that are harmful. Let us remember the words of St. Paul: “Do not use harmful words, but only helpful words, the kind that build up and provide what is needed, so that what you say will do good to those who hear you.” (Eph.4:29). “Because, from the fullness of the heart the mouth speaks.” (Lk.6:45). May you have a good and peaceful day and may God bless you.

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