16th Week in Ordinary Time : Sunday 17th July 2022

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  • 16th Week in Ordinary Time : Sunday 17th July 2022

Lord, help me to welcome You and listen to You always

16th Week in Ordinary Time : Sunday 17th July 2022

Gen. 18:1-10a; Ps. 14:2-3ab,3cd-4ab,5;
Col. 1:24-28; Lk. 10:38-42 (Ps Wk IV)

The story, in the Book of Genesis, is based on the common custom among the people who live in the desert of offering hospitality to strangers. In the figure of three strangers, Yahweh appears at the place where Abraham had pitched his tent. The story’s setting is the terebinths of Mamre, an ancient religious site where a single holy tree had grown “since time immemorial”. It is a sacred place that is very appropriate for a divine visitation.

Abraham greets the strangers respectfully and serves his guests as a good host. Sarah is not present in the tent since the women did not eat with the men. After the meal, the strangers ask a question about Sarah that could only have caused a shock to Abraham and Sarah. The question, however, serves as an introduction to the announcement of the birth of Abraham’s long-awaited descendant. Because of Abraham’s adherence to God’s command, God’s promise to him will now come to fulfilment.

In the Gospel passage, another story of providing hospitality is mentioned. Surely, Martha should have been praised for her practical service to Jesus? But here, Jesus challenges her to consider her priorities. The Gospel is not limited to loving service to others, no matter how important that is. Christian discipleship is, first and foremost, personal adherence to Jesus. There must be a time to listen to His “Word”. Therefore, devotion to Jesus is the “one thing required”. This relationship shows itself in loving service, but care for others’ needs may not be love without prayer.

Lord, may I welcome You and listen to You always.

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