It is 9th October 2018. We celebrate the memorials of the saints Denis, bishop and companions, martyrs and St. John Leonardi, Priest. The readings are from Galatians 1:13-24; and the Gospel from Luke 10:38-42. When the other person becomes our priority, we know our worth and meaning of our life. Listening to the shrill voice within each one of us makes us to hear the need of the other person and the need of the hour. We are all deafening our ears and hearts with the noise of the world while God is playing a music that is only heard in the deep silence of the heart. We all need to retreat ourselves and to pull back to listen to the other. It helps us to handle all the criticism and attacks on the good works we do to the church and the community. To serve God one has to listen to the Word of God. A service without adequate and heart drenching listening has a selfish motive that advertises and glory in oneself. God can pick anyone from any ugly and sinful situation to sit down in front of God’s presence and listen to the voice of God within and around. We all wish to impress someone somehow through something but God wants to express God’s love by permeating into the inner sanctuary when we are willing to settle down with God in His Only Beloved Son. God inspires us to do things we would not do otherwise in that one-to-one moment with God. We become defensive and self-protective when we employ words as we answer the call of God to serve but we truly become selfless once and for all when we begin to listen. In the first reading, the Judaizers questioned St. Paul about his authority to serve the Gospel. St. Paul explained that his authority to preach and teach comes from God and not from a human inspiration and source. St. Paul went away to Arabian deserts to spend days in communion with God (Gal.1:17). To discern the plan of God, one needs to listen to the Word of God and the Church. Let us not lose hope in God when people label us and persecute us with words that are hurting us to a point of quitting to serve God. People will always look at us from the view point of the past but God sees us as a brand-new person in every present moment. God is not tired of us yet no matter what was our past life and God wants us to be the listeners of God’s Word to serve the others. The responsorial Psalm intercedes, “Lead me, O Lord, in the path of life eternal.” (Ps.138:24). The Gospel teaches us all a powerful lesson of valuing the presence of Jesus in listening to Him by presenting two persons namely Martha and Mary. “You worry and fret about so many things, and yet a few are needed, indeed only one.” (Lk.10:41). Hospitality is important for hosting someone yet listening to the guests and making them feel loved comes only by the quality time we spend with them. Jesus was going towards Jerusalem to face the inevitable passion and death when he dropped by the home of his friend Lazarus. It is the relationship that matters than the attention we seek by the activities we do. A person who does not pray and spend a quality time in meditation cannot serve selflessly. It is the attentive listening to Jesus daily in His Word that offers the stamina for our souls to do things without seeking attention and recognition. We serve the others so that the Lord whom we worship is recognised and loved all the more. How much time is the Jesus-time in our daily hectic schedules? Are we trying to impress Jesus by being busy always? Are we willing to learn from Him by allowing ourselves to listen to Him? The better part is listening to Jesus before we engage in any humanitarian work. Anything that is weakening our relationship with Jesus is not good for the soul. Intimacy with the Lord is only possible in attentive listening spent in quality time with Jesus in our humble prayer not in hectic running about to score points for our personal gains. May we be able to able to spend quality time with God today so as to be blessed. May you have a good day. God bless you.

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