Saturday, August 22, 2015

21st Sunday in Ordinary Time, B

Choosing God

John 6:60-69


The context of the gospel is the people's desire for food that will last forever.

But Jesus is inviting them to taste the real food and drink: the body and blood of Jesus himself.  They could not accept these words.  They left him.

The first reading talks about Joshua asking the people, "Choose the god you want to serve; as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord." The people responded, "We will serve the Lord for he is our God."

If we are also asked this question, two answers should come to mind - first, whether we would choose to serve the Lord or not; and secondly, what is the quality of our response.

First, our capacity to choose comes from our being created in the image and likeness of God.  God is full freedom.  And God wants us to choose in full freedom to be his children or not.  We choose in full freedom.

Second, choosing God is not like a commodity that if we don't choose the product, we lose nothing.  On the contrary, in not choosing God, we choose to die.  We choose to live in selfishness and greed.

Third, if we eventually choose God, we are confronted with the quality of our response.  Could we still say we choose God but we don't serve him?  We choose God but our faith is as cold as ice.  We don't even travel through the path of sacrifice that Jesus took in order to save us.  So, it's also tantamount to saying "no".

Our choice eventually boils down to choosing between life or death.  If we see sufferings and sin around us, it means that we simply are not serving God the way He wants to be served.  But if we start working for peace, forgiveness, selflessness, building of communities, we are on the road to building life from here on earth to eternal life.

What is your choice?

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