It is 19th February 2017. We celebrate the Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time. The readings are from Leviticus 19:1-2, 17-18; the second reading is from 1 Corinthians 3:16-23; and the Gospel from Matthew 5:38-48. The first reading invites us to lead a holy life. Holiness means to live as God wants us to live and to shun hatred, vengeance, grudges, revenge and to be at the beck and call of the other’s welfare. No one is devoid of sinfulness yet we must pursue the path of holiness. We all have our own baggage of sins to deal with on every moment of our lives. Therefore, “be holy, for I, the Lord, your God, am holy.” (Lv.19:1). His holiness, Pope Francis remarked, “Holiness does not consist in doing extraordinary things but in leaving it to God.” Let not the actions and thoughts of the other person have consequences and reasons for our sinning. We must never justify our sinning because of someone or someone’s actions and behaviors. We have not yet reached the level of loving one another as we ought to be. The responsorial Psalm prays, “The Lord is kind and merciful.” (Ps.103:8). The second reading teaches us that we are the holy temples of God and the wisdom only comes through Jesus Christ. God is serious in protecting us as we are the temples of God and God will not tolerate anyone to destroy the temple of the Spirit of God. We do not acquire wisdom by holding a status in this world rather by living for Christ. We need to safeguard and strength the surrounding and sanctuary of the temples of the Holy Spirit. If we believe in Christ and live for Christ, we belong to Christ. Let us move forward to belong to God and Christ than belonging to a few human beings who are politically, economically and materially powerful here on earth. As Christ belongs to God, so we belong to Christ none other. The Gospel invites us to be perfect like God. The perfection of our living comes only by loving. Is it possible to live a life without acquiring some enemies? Yes, it is possible. When we begin to display an extra bit of good to all without resisting or fighting back even when we know we are totally right. It is all about how we love and interact with one another makes us holy or unholy. Let us make a habit of praying for those who challenge us, sideline us, ignore us, and condemn us. It is the question of God’s time and grace that will make us to live the life to the fullest. Be on guard in loving only to those who belong to our family, race, tribe, colour, culture and creed. We are still far from perfection in loving the other. “So be perfect, just as your heavenly Father is perfect.” (Mt.5:48). May you have a good day.

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