Catholic homily for Thursday of the 32nd Week in Ordinary Time Cycle I
Theme: WHEN WE ARE AWARE THAT GOD WITH US, IT IS THEN WE SHARE IN THE WISDOM WHICH FLOWS FROM GOD
By: Rev Fr Utazi Prince Marie Benignus
Homily for Thursday November 11 2021
MEMORIAL OF SAINT MARTIN OF TOURS, BISHOP)*
Wisdom 7: 22b 8: 1; Psalm 119: 89, 90, 91, 130, 135, 175; Luke 17: 20-25
I pray for you: May you always walk in the Light of the Lord Jesus and treasure the Wisdom which comes from the Holy Spirit. AMEN
One of the typical symbols or signs that an individual has come to a new insight or understanding of a situation is a light appearing in or over the persons head. Light has been used as a symbol of wisdom in many cultures. With light, one sees more clearly, not only physically, but mentally and spiritually. It is no wonder that Jesus identifies Himself as the Light. He is portrayed as the Wise One Who uses His relationship with His Father and the Holy Spirit to lead Him in His earthly life and ministry. He also imparts wisdom and the Holy Spirit to His followers. We, His modern followers/disciples, must continue to be enlightened and filled with wisdom as we await the completion of Gods kingdom which has already begun, but not yet been fully achieved.
Todays readings use lightning/light as a symbol of Wisdom and the Kingdom of God. The First Reading extols the qualities of Wisdom and links Wisdom to God. Wisdom is seen as the handmaid of God. She is present with God and is treasured by those who seek to be in relationship with God. Those who are in Wisdoms company exhibit such qualities as enlightenment, holiness, kindness, peace, stability. Thus a person who desires to live a God-graced life will be accustomed to live with Wisdom. All admirable character traits flow from Wisdom. God blesses those who seek Wisdom.
The Responsorial Psalm speaks of the importance and effect of the Word of God. The Word of God gives understanding to the simple and guides the way of those who seek to walk in Gods path.
The Gospel presents the Incarnate Word of God (Jesus) speaking to both the Pharisees and His disciples about the coming of the Kingdom of God. Jesus announces that the Kingdom of God has already begun and is in their midst, if they but open their minds and hearts to it. The fullness of the Kingdom of God will not come about until the Son of Man returns in final glory. In the meantime there will be trying days for followers of Christ as they await His return.
Dear Sisters and Brothers, Pondering the readings today, I realize how important it is to focus on Gods presence with us at this very moment. When we are aware of God-with-us (Emmanuel) we share in the Wisdom which flows from God. We act not with human intelligence or lack of human intelligence, nor out of our base nature, but motivated by knowing that God is at our side. This is the beginning of the Kingdom of God in our lives here and now. This is Wisdom. Of course, the fullness of the Kingdom of God is yet to come. We are in the already, but not yet time. We can experience the foretaste of the Kingdom of God right now. What can guide us in our living within the kingdom of God is Wisdom. Wisdom is not primarily an intellectual thing. Wisdom is the ability to keep our eyes focused on, and ears open to, what God is doing presently and then acting with the hope (assurance, not wishful thinking) that God will keep the divine promises and welcome us into the fullness of the Kingdom.
Dearly beloved, in practice, todays readings are challenging me to act in a way which manifests my being part of Gods kingdom and acting with Wisdom. Obviously the qualities discussed in the First Reading should be those which I try to practice in my life: holiness, kindness, peace, stability, enlightenment. I must hold up each of my thoughts and deeds to the pure Light of Wisdom. I must examine my behavior and discern what will most fully proclaim the kingdom of God that is not only here for me, but also for others. Just as lightning is not as mighty as the sun, (which is not as powerful as God), and just as we could not draw as close to the sun and still live as earthlings, so the Kingdom of God which we experience now is not as majestic as what still lies in store for us, and it is only once we leave this earthly place (or until Jesus returns at the end of time) that we will experience the fullness of Gods kingdom.
*MEDITATION* What is Wisdom to me? How do I see Wisdom linked to God to the kingdom of God? What relationship do I see between Light and Wisdom and the Kingdom of God? What can I do to show that I am part of Gods kingdom? How can I help others to come to a greater awareness of this Kingdom of God in their lives?
*PRAYER* Lord God Our Father, we beg you to help us to look forward to the fullness of Your enlightening splendor in Your heavenly Reign. Through Christ Our Lord. Amen.
*O DIVINE WORD, WHO TOOK FLESH FOR HUMAN SAKE, REDEEM US IN OUR SITUATION*
© Rev Fr Utazi Prince Marie Benignus