Pondering for Sunday, August 30, 2020

Part 1 of 2

Daily Office Readings for Sunday of Proper 17: Year 2

Psalms 148, 149, 150114, and 115Job 11:1-9,13-20Rev. 5:1to14Matthew 5:1to12

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.” 

Our Lord Jesus said these words in his sermon on the mount –Mount Tabor that is.  Of all his “Blessed” sayings, the peacemaker is the one I like the best.  I am a nine on the Enneagram Institute test; which means, I am a dot-connector.  I like bringing people together.  But this test results may be more than just about me.  It may be that all Christians are called to be children of God as they are also called to bring people together.

When I have talked about this Beatitude before, I have mentioned that I like the Spanish translation better.  In essence it says, “those who work for peace shall be called children of God.”  I like this version better because to be a child of God, one is not measured by actually bringing about the peace, but rather, working towards such a peace.  No one knows if the desired peace will come but that shouldn’t stop us from trying, – that is, working towards peace.

Part 2 of 2

New Testament Eucharistic Readings for Sunday of Proper 17: Year A

Romans 12:9 to 21   and Matthew 16:21 to 28

“But he turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; for you are setting your mind not on divine things but on human things.”  (Matthew 16:23)

Who of us can really set aside our own yearnings, even to do the will of God, if we even knew the will of God?  Divine things are about the welfare and benefit of the human community.  Our Lord Jesus came among us to be a moral light;  to model for us the way we can live harmoniously with one another. We first must rid ourselves of all sordid self-centeredness and look for the good of all of us.  Looking out for the good of all of us is the Divine thing to do.  Anything short of community enhancement should be considered a stumbling block to us. At the end of the day, we need to each ask ourselves; “how have I made the world a better place?”

I sometimes stop and marvel at an ant colony.  The individual ant, is never concerned about the individual self, – only the life and wellbeing of the whole colony.  As fellow citizens and neighbors of the whole planet, we too should be concerned about the livelihood of the whole human population.

Let us hear what the Spirit is saying to and through the saints of God and then ponder anew what the Almighty can do.  John

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