January 24, 2021 - The 3rd Sunday of Ordinary Time
“Teach me your ways, O Lord.”
Jonah 3:1-5, 10
1 Corinthians 7: 29-31
by Sr. Maureen Niedermeyer, OSB
We know that Jonah was a reluctant prophet, but how often we can also drag our feet when we know what God wants us to do. Most of us don’t like to be the bearer of difficult news, but surprisingly, the Ninevites followed what Jonah had said about reforming their lives. Daily God calls each of us to change our lives. Who has not heard the call to put away grudges and anger? It may seem like we are being asked to also wear the itchy sackcloth and ashes when we have to deal compassionately with people who irritate us.
Are you shocked to read that the world in its present form is passing away? Paul announced this news many years ago: “The time is running out.” Today we face the possibility that our frail and beautiful home planet is being destroyed by our own greed and carelessness. Human activity is having a significant, negative impact on the ability of our own world to sustain life as we know it. By our lack of concern we are creating the instrument of our own demise. We know that time is a precious gift. Could we make better use of the moments of our day? What about taking time for a smile, a letter to someone who is ill, listening to someone who is troubled, or taking more time for quiet and prayer? The choice is ours. “May we, together with the angels and the company of heaven, help unfold your plan for planet Earth.” Nan C. Merrill
I have always been amazed at the apostles’ quick response to the invitation of the Spirit-filled Jesus to follow him. Perhaps they had witnessed His miracles and heard Him speak words that moved their hearts as no one else had done, but what must their father Zebedee have felt and said to them as they left him and their nets so quickly! Anyone who follows God’s call may expect that message to affect others, too. May we be ready to hear God’s call to us even when it comes at an unexpected time.
From the Rule of St. Benedict
“Listen carefully, my son/daughter, to my instructions, and attend to them with the ear of your heart. This is advice from one who loves you; welcome it and faithfully put it into practice.” Prologue, vs. 1
“The kingdom of God is at hand. Repent and believe the Gospel.” Mark 1:15