Reflection on Today’s Daily Readings by Fr. Bertrand Buby, SM
Scripture: Ephesians 5:21-33. Psalm 128:1-2.3.4-5. Luke 13:18-21.
The bottom line for all inspired writers of the New Testament is love. A
recent Pauline scholar when asked about Paul’s most important message or
thrust immediately the answer give was that it is the gift of love. We
have seen this in Ephesians these past two weeks and now as it comes closer
to ending we again see it in the image Paul uses for the Church–not
priesthood, nor religious life, but the married state. Husbands and wives
are to love each other mutually just as the Church and Christ are united in
the same way, the Head of the Body with the Body and its members–one just
as husband and wife are one in the flesh in the sacrament of marriage.
Thus we see that relationships can be built upon the gift of love and love
holds them together as intimate friends, committed to the same purpose and
goals. Those we love and who love us feel the joy and the unity of such
love. Paul sees that in the meaning of belonging to Christ through the
Church. We are called to build on this important gift through fidelity,
continuity, and commitment.
Our Psalm for today is within a family setting of the father and mother
surrounded by their children like olive plants–a precious symbol for those
of an agrarian livelihood. The Psalm is one of the ascent psalms that
pilgrims recited in moving up into the temple through the wide steps that
lead to the doors of the sacred place of worhip. The image of the psalm
emphasizes the role of the family and its blessedness through the gift of
love between the parents and their children. Biblical idealism? Rather
the way it should be if Christians and all God’s people could assimilate
the psalm into their hearts and share what they find there with one
Too difficult? Yes, if we are not open to the Holy Spirit and to the grace
Jesus continues to explain his own teachings about faith and love through
agrarian imaging. The kingdom of God is likened to a mustard seed; it also
is similar to the effect of leaven with the dough. Both grow in an
imperceptible way until they are perfected in fruit and in loaves of bread.
Little things grow by the grace of God into the kingdom of God. So just as
Paul showed us the unity and growth in love through the image of marriage
and the Body of Christ, Jesus showed us how the little things in creation
can be used for teaching us about the nature of the kingdom of God.
“Happy are those who fear the Lord” our response from verse 1, Psalm 128 as
we mount the stairs leading to the kingdom. Amen.