Thirty Second Week in Ordinary Time
Gospel: Lk 17: 1-6
Jesus said to his disciples, “Things that cause sin will inevitably occur, but woe to the one through whom they occur. It would be better for him if a millstone were put around his neck and he be thrown into the sea than for him to cause one of these little ones to sin. Be on your guard! If your brother sins, rebuke him; and if he repents, forgive him. And if he wrongs you seven times in one day and returns to you seven times saying, ‘I am sorry,’ you should forgive him.” And the Apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith.” The Lord replied, “If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you would say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you.”
WE ALL NEED FORGIVENESS: Christian life is impossible without willingness to forgive one another seven times a day (Lk 17:4). This is what the gospel is telling us today. Forgiveness in the lives of Christians means to choose life. Through forgiveness we open a new future for ourselves and for others. Forgiveness is the most divine thing we can do. Refusal to forgive is to isolate ourselves from the human beings and from God, because God rejoices in forgiving than revenging. Justice does not mean to destroy the evil persons, but forgiving and offering a new relationship. Dag Hammarskjold wrote in his diary: “Forgiveness breaks the chain of causality, while hatred causes injustices and violence. That is the cycle, a satanic circle. Forgiveness’s breaks this cycle open. Our world needs forgiveness.” (Bremen, The God who won’t let go, 59).
PRAYER: Lord help me to forgive others always.
FOUNDED ON FAITH: There is a tradition in the east; they count life from the day one is initiated into asceticism, not from the day he was born. Because, birth does not necessarily start life, but a vegetative existence. Most people simply are vegetate, they breathe, and they grow old but do not come in contact with the living waters of ‘Life’. Jesus offers a plain challenge: is your faith as the size of a mustard seed? The question is how big your faith is and how deep is your belief in God. We do not have enough religion to see the other as part of me. If your brother sins, rebuke him, warn him but finally take him into a warm embrace, was a recipe for a God’s community. Ours is a land where there has been lot of bloodshed. Jesus encourages us to correct and forgive. You will do seemingly impossible things, if your life is rooted in faith. It is said most people realize that they were alive only when they die! Let us give witness to our faith to start a new culture, a culture of hope and brotherhood.