22nd Week in Ordinary Time : Sunday 3rd September 2023

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  • 22nd Week in Ordinary Time : Sunday 3rd September 2023

Crosses are not obstacles; they are the means for our salvation

22nd Week in Ordinary Time : Sunday 3rd September 2023

Jer. 20:7-9; Ps. 62:2-6,8-9;
Rom. 12:1-2; Mt. 16:21-27 (Ps. Wk. II)

Jesus remarked that Peter was an obstacle in His path because he remonstrated at the words of Jesus that He would suffer and die. The obstacle Jesus meant was that he would be a scandal – like a stone that makes people stumble along the road. The human way of looking at pain and death is different from the divine way. In fact, Jesus continues to emphasise, “Anyone who wants to save his life will lose it, but anyone who loses his life for my sake will find it.”

If we carry our crosses the self-referential human way, we will stumble and fall. The cross becomes a stumbling block or obstacle in our pathway of life. People cannot escape from suffering and death. In other words, people cannot escape from carrying their own crosses. But if we renounce ourselves, take up our cross, and follow Jesus, then we carry them in the self-emptying divine way. Then, the crosses do not become obstacles; they become the means for our salvation. The crosses lift us up rather than burden us down. They become stepping stones rather than stumbling stones.

Consider turning away from what makes us fall to what can help us along this life journey. If we fix our eyes on following Jesus, even though we are carrying our own cross, we can have the strength to follow Jesus and bear the burden of our own tribulations.

Lord Jesus, I follow You carrying my own cross.

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