25th Week in Ordinary Time: Tuesday 24th September 2019

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The world is our home - God is Father of the entire human race - we are one family

25th Week in Ordinary Time: Tuesday 24th September 2019

Ezr. 6:7-8,12,14-20; Ps. 122(121):1-2,3-5;
Lk. 8:19-21 (Ps Wk I)

It was getting harder and harder for the Israelites to hate their captors. The new Persian regime had already let them return home. No Dairus, Cyrus’ successor, was even using royal funds to rebuild the temple. Enemies can become friends if we allow it to happen. We need to see them in new ways and change the ways we think about them. Have you ever become friends with someone you regarded as an ‘enemy’?

The words of Jesus sound a little harsh to our ears. He seems to dismiss them as he proclaims that those who do the will of God are his mother and brothers. The words must have been shocking to those living in a tradition that revered and honoured parents and family.

But Jesus was not turning his back on his family — on the contrary, he was expanding it. He came to build all the humanity into one family. From now on, he insisted, don’t confine your love just to your blood relatives. All who respond to God can be counted as our family. In a sense, our family has grown enormous.

The words of Jesus are a challenge to broaden our hearts and minds and embrace more than just those who are near and dear to us. Let us look around — who can we count among our family? If we do so, will our behaviour towards them change? The world is our home and all humanity is our potential family.

Lord, may there be no barriers to my love for  others.