January 30, 2022 - The Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time
“I will sing of your salvation.”
Jeremiah 1:4-5; 17-19
1 Corinthians 12:31- 13:13
Gospel According to Luke 4:21-30
by Sister Jane Hibbard
Jesus gave us two great commandments: “You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.” Luke 10:27
We use the word “love” in many different ways. We often say we “love” a lovely sunset or even a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. It is good to stop, consider, and ponder how profound loving the Lord our God and one another actually is. It is the most important and necessary activity we are called to do, and given what Jesus says in St. Luke’s Gospel, the only thing that really matters. It holds all of life together when we keep that loving embrace open and flowing.
The second reading today from First Corinthians helps us to understand what it means to love God and to love one another. First Paul points out that if you practice all these other spiritual gifts, etc. but are not loving, it means nothing! Let that marinate in your heart. “Love is patient, love is kind….it bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”
From the concentration camp before she died, Etty Hillesum (1914-1943) gave us this advice:
“All that matters now is to be kind to each other with all the goodness that is in you.”
So be loving, just be loving…..of God and every other person you meet and love all of God’s beautiful creation. Pray to be loving in every encounter. It is not only enough; it is the only spiritual gift that really matters. That should give us tremendous consolation. And our God is just as loving in return.
From the Rule of St. Benedict
“Your way of acting should be different from the world’s way; the love of Christ must come before all else.” “Never give a hollow greeting of peace or turn away when someone needs your love.” 4:20 – 21; 25-26
“The Lord sent me to bring glad tidings to the poor; to proclaim liberty to captives.” Luke 4:18