Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Bulletin Date: 
Sunday, July 2, 2017

Reflection...

Paul’s admonition in Galatians 6:10, makes a great introduction to the issue of hospitality; “So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all men, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.”

How we treat others is a picture window into the condition of our own souls. Our gracious treatment of others, or lack thereof, reveals a great deal about how we feel about ourselves. It also reveals our perspective on others and whether we see the as Christ sees them, or whether we simply treat them as their behavior warrants. Most importantly it reveals our devotion to Christ and our willingness to let his desires and interests exceed our own self-interest.

Our hope is that the Father will not treat us as we deserve to be treated, but will respond to us in mercy (not giving us that which we deserve) and in grace (giving us that which we do not deserve) based on the fact that we know and love his Son, Jesus, the Christ. In the same manner, Jesus does not expect us to treat others as they deserve, but to treat them with mercy and grace even as we have been treated by him. Imagine how drastically different the world would be if mercy and grace prevailed in all our dealings with others. How quickly some behavior would disappear, and opportunities to express love, compassion, and service would be eagerly sought. Jesus’ words, “for as much as you do it to one of these you do it to Me,” would become the watch word for how we relate to others. This is especially true in respect to how we treat other Christians in whom Christ dwells, for in reality our treatment either honors or dishonors Christ who dwells in the other person.

Likewise, Hebrews 13:2, “Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares” should move us to treat all people with a similar attitude. For we do not know, and cannot know, if maybe the person we encounter has in fact been sent by God. One thing we do know if we are believers, is that we have been sent by God, and represent him to each person we encounter.

God Bless! Fr. Elmer