15th Sunday in Ordinary Tim ©
Intro: Tell story of Father Prendergast and “I just love these potatoes!”
“YOU ONLY LOVE GOD AND PEOPLE” ……….. NOT POTATOES!!!!”
He was right…. Potatoes are an inanimate object…!!!!
Have you ever asked yourself the question?
“How do I get to heaven?”
This is the question that the scholar asks Jesus in today’s Gospel.
THE FOLLOW UP QUESTION that we should ask is: “Specifically, what is God asking me to do to get there?”
At some point all of us have heard the GOLDEN RULE:
Treat others as you would like to be treated!
This GOLDEN RULE actually challenges us to reflect on two things:
1. How do I love myself (in a non-selfish way)?
2. How do I USE that love as a guide to love others?
You see, love of self is seeing myself as a beautiful creation of God. If I cannot FIRST SEE that in myself it will then be difficult to show that love to OTHERS!!!!
Often, our cruelty in the way we treat our classmates, friends, and family stems from OUR INABILITY to first love GOD in OURSELVES!
Another good question to ask is: “Who is my neighbor”?
The parable today, answering and explaining who our neighbor is …. is a difficult one ….. because …. Mercy and the love of God are shown to a person who is different than us.
As we have heard time and time again Samaritans and Jewish people were opposed to each other, so it would have been unheard of for them to associate with one another.
We are continuing to live in a world where there are violence and hatred between races, societal class, and positions of authority. It is so sad ……
BUT …… think about it ?????? EACH of us has the graced opportunity to be THE SAMARITAN in life …. who can cross over the lines of division to bring mercy and to bring the love of God.
So today, you may not be going from JERUSALEM to JERICHO, but you are going from this CHURCH …. Having received communion, back into the world! Happy travelling!