Today’s Gospel: Matthew 12:1-8
When we are hungry — whether with a physical, emotional, or spiritual hunger — God will feed us, sometimes in unconventional ways. He fed His disciples with grain when they were going through a field. He fed David and his companions with the bread offering from the house of God.
The scriptures reveal God’s truth and his prescriptions for life. But His word challenges us to critically think as well. Why throw in the fact that God’s disciples ate the grain on the Sabbath? Why bring up the conflict between Jesus’ actions and the criticisms of the Pharisees? Why confuse the matter with a line like, “I desire mercy, not sacrifice”? What does that mean?
Couldn’t God just make things more clear, so it would be easier to follow his commands? Our God is a god of order. He did try to make things simple when he created Adam and Eve. It’s the evil unleashed on the world after original sin that makes everything so complicated.
The real battle is not between Jesus and the Pharisees. The issue is not the Sabbath. The real battle is between Jesus and evil. It comes down to obedience.
Satan tries to win that battle by creating confusion, disorder, division, and chaos. He tries to make things complex and hard to understand. Then Satan further complicates the matter by using our own personal weaknesses, our root sin, against us when we try to sort this out.
Staying close to Jesus transcends this. A strong sacramental and prayer life helps us walk the line between legalism and laxity. God wrote His law in our hearts. God gives us the tools we need to discern the right choices in our lives and the grace and strength to make them.
Satan is infinitely smarter than us. How much are we allowing the world to keep us chasing our tail with busy schedules of even “good things to do” that don’t give ourselves enough space and time to discern God’s truth?
Thank You for “giving us this day our daily bread” and a will to choose to love You through our obedience, even if it requires a little extra discernment on our part.
Copyright 2019 Christina M. Weber
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