WE NEED TO LISTEN BETTER
This weekend I continue my latest message series (homily series) called CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW? This four part homily series is a chance for all of us to look at how we can listen better and more to God and one another. This way we can truly be faithful disciples who tear down walls, heal divisions and share the Good News in our world.
If you miss any part of the series you can go to our family website www.chathamcatholic.ca and click the link. You can either watch the homily video or listen to the audio podcast.
DISCIPLES NOT MASTERS
In order for us to really listen with our minds and hearts to God and to each other, we need to remember that we are not the masters but disciples and students of the one Master—our Lord Jesus Christ. This means that we are always looking to learn new things and realize that we do not know everything.
In the gospel this weekend Jesus says, “A disciple is not above the teacher, but everyone who is fully qualified will be like their teacher.” (Luke 6:40) The role of our faith communities is to train, educate and empower all of us to be like the teacher, willing to offer our lives for the sake of those who are in need. We come to worship and celebrate as one family in order that we together can be images of Christ in our families, work places and the world. We are not the masters but students who seek to be Jesus in our world by the way we serve, forgive and sacrifice each day without hesitation or judgement. We are all trying to help build the kingdom of God one action at a time.
BLINDNESS IN OUR LIVES
One of the challenges that we all face is the fact that we think we can do everything on our own. We get caught in the trap of completely relying on ourselves and not God and others who can help us in our journey to heaven. We forget that we are students of the master so often eager to direct, criticize and condemn others while thinking we are perfect. We have a common journey and mission requiring each other.
Being a student of Christ means that we must be humble, gentle and realize that we need Jesus and others in our lives. This not only for our own benefit, but for the world to encounter Christ. Jesus states in the gospel this weekend, “Can a blind person guide a blind person? Will not both fall into a pit?” (Luke 6:39) In order for us to truly see and listen in our world, we need open minds, hearts and lives knowing that we do not know everything. We all need healing, grace and love so that we may see most fully what we need to change in our lives while seeing how we can help those around us.
ARE WE PASSING THE TEST?
Of course if we are students, this of means that we have tests and exams to pass showing our progress. This happens for us in our faith lives as well. If we are disciples of the Lord and students of the one Master, we are formed into His likeness for the sake of our world today. How can we know if we are on the right path and following our Divine Teacher? We can see by the good works that we produce each day. We hear Jesus again in this weekend’s gospel as he says,
“Out of the good treasure of the heart, the good person produces good, and out of evil treasure, the evil person produces evil; for it is out of the abundance of the heart that the mouth speaks.” (Luke 6:45)
These are powerful words that remind us that to truly listen requires a conversion of heart to what God wants and a surrendering of what we want. It is from the heart that we produce either good or bad in our world. We just need to look at what we are doing and ask ourselves these helpful questions:
(1) Am I making the people around me better or worse?
(2) Is what I say help build people up or tear them down?
(3) How many things that I do each day are for me or to help others?
Let us open our hearts to the Lord’s healing grace so that we can truly see ourselves as empowered students who are like the Master—called to share and live the Gospel each day to help transform the world.