Homily for the 22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A
Theme: Accepting Self Denial So As To Accomplish God’s Will.
By: Fr Emmanuel Nwokeji.
Homily for Sunday August 30 2020
Jeremiah 20:7-9, Rom. 12:1-2, Matt. 16:21-27.
In the first reading, Jeremiah felt deceived for speaking the mind of God. He prayerfully lamented the ridicule he was experiencing because of God’s role for his life. I encourage Jeremias of our time with 1Pt 4:17, it is better to suffer for doing good, if it should be God’s will than for doing evil.
In the Gospel, Jesus presents the reality of the cross as part of the entering into the Father’s Kingdom. Jesus laid it out in black and white for us his followers. He didn’t sugar coat the fundamental conditions for following Him; To deny oneself and to take up one’s cross.
Self-denial is “the willingness to deny oneself possessions or status, in order to grow in holiness and commitment to God”. Jesus’ life manifested it as made known in Phil. 2:6-8, who, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God…he emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, being born in human likeness. And being found in human form, he humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death even death on a cross. Jesus lived for others and died for sinners. He gave His life willingly to those of us who didn’t deserve it. He is calling us to do the same. Ever ready to loose our lives in accomplishing the will of God. Ever ready to say the truth at all times, even if it exposes us to shame, humiliation and embarrassment. Ready not to remain silent in the face of evil even if a high profiled status or position awaits for us.
Jesus revealed His eternal Father’s Will for Him. He will go Jerusalem where he will suffer but will be raised up on the third day.
What Is This Will Of God?
It is everything that God desires or wish to happen in heaven and on earth. Again, it is the sovereign plan of God that will happen in the coming hours. For instance in Matt26:39, My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will. So, the will of God was that Jesus die. This was his plan, his decree and no changing about it.
For the accomplishment of God’s will, Peter set in to be an obstacle. He rebuked Jesus not to accept what the Father has planned for Him for the salvation of the world. God forbids that such thing (suffering) will happen to u or be ur portion. Thus, when our advice, help, and gift discouraged one from denying themselves and carrying their cross that will lead to the fulfilment of God’s will, then, our mouth piece is of satanic like Peter. But if it encouraged, it becomes mouth piece of God.
Peter’s mouth piece tended to thwart Jesus’ teaching in Matt 6:9-10…Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Many of us like Peter knowingly or unknowingly, do not want God to have His wish, His will, His plans, His purpose fulfilled. May what we deny ourselves, the cross we carry and our mouth piece be for the accomplishment of God’s will and glory. Amen.
Fr Emmanuel Nwokeji.