Monday, August 19, 2013

20th Sunday Ordinary Time - Luke 12:49-53 - A Prophet's Life

My brothers and sisters, Rejoice!
I bring you Glad Tidings and Good News!
I bring you words of hope and encouragement! 
The Lord, your God has mercy and forgiveness for His people. 
The Lord loves His people and desires them to live in peace and prosperity with Him forever and ever!
Sing a new song to the Lord, for he liberates captives, frees the oppressed and comforts the troubled.
In the Lord, find a new day dawning; a day of peace and plenty - where all tears and sorrow are wiped away.

The Kingdom of God is at hand.  Heed His call to repent.
  • Turn away from your old sinful ways and look upon the Lord with joy. 
  • Renew your faith in God and be welcomed into His heavenly Kingdom.
  • Trust in the Lord, your God, to deliver you from domination and despair. 
  • Find in Him new hope and courage to live in freedom – fully human - as beloved children of God! 
  • Throw off the yoke of oppression and sin.
  • Cast aside the things that take away your dignity and respect as humans. 
  • Turn you back on the ways of the world that deny your freedom.
  • Reject those who would do you harm - for their profit; leading you away from the Lord into the hands of the evil-one. 
  • Live as children of the one God, Father of us all, who loves us beyond imagination, gives us all the good things we need and desires us to live with Him in peace and freedom - forever and ever. 
The life of a prophet is not an easy life.  While the prophet brings Good News of hope and peace - in living a new life in the loving embrace of God: he also reminds us that the journey of faith has its risks and requirements. 

God selects his prophets: it is not a chosen career path.  Usually prophets try to talk God out of His bestowing this singular honor on them. Some prophets try to run away, many deny that God has chosen them; all complain to God that it’s a life too hard for them and beg to be relieved of the privilege to represent God to his people.  This is due mostly to the nature of the message God wants His people to hear. 

Telling people about the good things is easy:
  • Peaceful living in a land of milk and honey
  • A life free from sorrow and tears
  • Lives of plenty, free from deprivation and despair
  • No more pain and affliction
  • Liberation from oppression and slavery
  • Delivery from addiction to worldly pleasures

But - telling people they need to change their lives and amend their sinful - destructive ways – that’s the hard part. 

No one wants to be the bearer of bad news - or have to remind people that they need to change their ways; - turning their backs on the treasures of this world to build up treasure in heaven.  It upsets people: it makes them angry and fearful.  No one likes to be reminded that the things they do are against God and that they need to change their wicked ways – even if it’s for their own good.  It makes them want to do things - like – throw you down a well – or nail you to a cross. 
  • Both Jesus and Jeremiah spoke God’s word to His people. 
  • Both reminded the people of God’s love and care for them and God’s desire for His people to be with Him in His heavenly Kingdom. 
  • Both called for rejection of the status quo, to break from the addiction of worldly desires and denounce adherence to evil ways.
  • Both called for the people to repent, ask for God’s mercy and forgiveness - and come to a new life
  • Both Jesus and Jeremiah were seized by those who feared the power of God’s Word - that it would take away their power over the people
  • Both Jesus and Jeremiah suffered for their faith
  • Both Jesus and Jeremiah were raised up – Jeremiah out of the mud - onto solid ground and Jesus to the Glory of heaven. 
Throughout all time God calls to His people to turn away from sin and worldly desire: to turn toward Him – to be loved by Him, to live in peace with Him, to become fully human in Him - His children - forever and ever.
~ Amen.


Deacon Don Ron

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