Today’s Gospel: Matthew 22:34-40
Memorial of Saint Pius X, Pope
“You shall love.” Everything depends on love. Jesus says the very foundation of Jewish identity—the law and the prophets—depends on the commandment to love. St. Paul echoes this in Romans 13:10: “Love is the fulfillment of the law.”
As for me, I am a middle child, a pleaser, a rule-follower. Kind of. If I know why a rule was established, and I can agree that it is reasonable, then wind me up and watch me go! (But Heaven help the customer service rep who speaks to me of “Policy”—like the time I tried to pick up the Magic Tree House book my daughter had requested from the library. Although the library database listed me as the parent of my seven-year-old daughter, the librarian quoted chapter and verse of the Policy that restricted me from bringing the book home to my daughter without her permission. Ugh!) But Jesus’ two great commandments are all about love, and I can totally support that. Who doesn’t love love?
At times, though, the commandment to love intimidates me. There is no way to check off “love” on my to-do list. I can never love enough, and I can never be done loving. I always have room to grow in love.
My nightly review helps me reflect on my day in the context of love. I ask the Lord to help me recall my day. Then I play back every thought, word, and deed of the day. Where did I encounter love during the day? What did I think in my heart about the people I interacted with? Where do I need to pray for more strength so I can act more lovingly tomorrow?
If the people closest to me had to describe me in one word, would “loving” be that word? How can I be a better lover?
“I pray Our Lord to strengthen your heart and fill it so completely with his love that you will love him only and desire to be loved by him alone.” –from a letter of St. Claude la Colombière, SJ, to his sister.
We thank our friends at The Word Among Us for providing our gospel reflection team with copies of Abide In My Word 2015: Mass Readings at Your Fingertips. To pray the daily gospels with this wonderful resource, visit The Word Among Us.
Copyright 2015 Grace Mazza Urbanski