HOMILY FOR THE 19TH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME OF THE YEAR C
THEME: WAIT PATIENTLY, FOR YOUR REWARD IS COMING.
BY: Rev. Fr. Edward Onwueme E.
HOMILY FOR SUNDAY AUGUST 7 2022
1st Rd. Wisdom 18:6-9,
2nd Rd. Hebrews 11:1-2.8-19,
Gospel Of St Luke 12:32-48.
One of the dangerous diseases holding many of us today is the lack of patience. One of the Igbo adages says, “Anu nwere ndidi, na anu mmiri di mma.” In Ps 40:1, David says, “I waited patiently for the Lord, and He inclined to me and heard my cry.” Waiting patiently is one of the virtues that is lacking in our contemporary world today. Our youths want fast money without working patiently. Many have involved themselves in kidnapping, occultism, bet9ja, rituals, etc. Fast food, because we cannot wait patiently to prepare our own food. Fast miracles, because we cannot wait patiently to kneel down with faith and pray. We are always running around from one prayer house to another. Fornication and unwanted pregnancies everywhere, because we don’t want to wait patiently to get married. Road accidents everywhere, because we don’t want to wait patiently for our own turn, etc. When you ask some of us, we will tell you that “over time is allowed, anaghi akwu na line akpata ego.” St. Augustine urges us that, “We should not pray for easy life, but pray to be strong.”
In the second reading, from the letter to the Hebrews 11, reveals to us that faith has to do with waiting patiently. In verses 8-19, recalled two renowned people for their faith in God, Abraham and Sarah who waited patiently to the promises of God. Because of their unshakable faith, God rewarded them immensely, because He says in Isaiah 40:31, “Those who wait patiently upon the Lord shall renew their strength.” We need to take Abraham and Sarah as role models.
THE TEACHING OF JESUS ON WAITING PATIENTLY
In the Gospel, Jesus teaches us the way to wait for his return. In Luke 12:35-36, Jesus spells out three elements involved in waiting, which include:
1) Preparation… Be dressed ready.
2) Maintenance… Keep your lamps burning.
3) Expectation… Be like men waiting for their master.
The good waiter is to keep his lamp burning, just like the five wise virgins in Matt 25:1-12 waiting patiently for the arriving of the master. Students waiting for their examinations, interviews, business, midnight prayer, etc, will have their lamps burning. That time Jesus gave this parable, they don’t have any street light to keep on, so that the master could easily find and enter his door. So shall with the disciples who await the Lord’s return. Anyone that is waiting should prepare well, so that the Lord’s return will not be a surprise.
BLESSINGS FOR THOSE WHO WAIT PATIENTLY
There is power and blessings in waiting patiently to the promises of God. Jesus assures his disciples in Lk 24:49-53, to wait patiently at Jerusalem till they receive the Holy Spirit, which they did and received Him. Anna and Simeon waited patiently for the Lord and they saw Him in the Temple (Lk. 2:25-38).
We have many waiters in the Bible, who are reminding us the virtue of waiting patiently on God. Some of them are:
1) Naoh who waited patiently when the flood covered the earth (Gen 8).
2) Abraham, who waited patiently believing that God will fulfill his promises (Gen. 16-18).
3) Simeon and Anna in Lk 2.
4)Joseph son of Jacob who waited patiently in the prison, till God vindicated him (Gen. 40-41).
5) Job who waited patiently for the mercy of God, and did not give up in his temptations, and God rewarded him with unquantifiable blessings (Job 1, 2- 42:12-17).
6) Jacob, David, Virgin Mary, etc.
THOSE WHO DID NOT WAIT PATIENTLY
We have also those who lost their hope in waiting:
1) Saul offered sacrifices which was not his duty, because he could not wait patiently for Samuel to come (1 Sam. 13:7-12).
2) Sarah gave Abraham Hagar for him to give her a child through her (Gen 16).
3) The Israelites asked Aaron to make a god for them to worship. That they can’t wait patiently for Moses to return, and Aaron made a gold bull calf for them (Ex. 32). They also complained against God and Moses when they have seen they can’t wait patiently for the promises of God, and God punished them ( Numb. 11,14,20, 21).
4) Thomas was not with others in the upper room when Jesus visited them, because he can’t wait patiently ( Jn. 20:24-25), etc.
My dearest people of God, let us cultivate the spirit of waiting patiently to the promises of God. God is a timeless Being. He does not come late. Anytime He comes, is the appointed time. That is why, He told Habakkuk to wait patiently for the blessings he had seen in the vision. That it must surely take place (Hab. 2:2-4). And in Ps. 90:4, and 2 Pt. 3:8, says that, “A thousand years in our eyes is like a day in the eyes of God.”
Many of us will wait patiently for our flights, watch movies, beautify our hairs, watch football matches etc, but do not wait patiently for a priest to dismiss a holy Mass. Many of us are no longer experiencing angelic visitations, because we don’t have time to wait patiently for them again. Ps. 130:6, says, “My Soul waits for the Lord, more than the watchmen for the morning.” Many of us don’t even have time for midnight prayers again. You forget that your enemy the devil is always awake, roaming round like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. Be firm in faith and resist him (1 Pt. 5:8-9). Paul and Silas stood firm in faith by singing and praying in the midnight, and God liberated them ( Acts 16:25-30). When we finish talking to God in our prayers, do we still wait patiently to hear what God has to say? You come to Mass late and you will not wait patiently to the end of the Mass. Where do you think you are going?
Lack of patience has destroyed a lot of people today, especially our youths. Let us emulate Abraham and other holy people in the Bible who waited patiently.
May God in his mercy, give us the grace to wait patiently in our social, intellectual, spiritual, physical activities and grant all our heart desires through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.
Happy Nineteenth Sunday To You!
Have A Nice Week!
Remain Blessed in The Lord!
Rev. Fr. Edward Onwueme E.