REFLECTION FOR TODAY
October 3, 2021
By Fr. Andrew Ibegbulem, OSA
“But from the beginning of creation, God made them male and female. For this reason, a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh. So they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore, what God has joined together, no human being must separate.” Mk. 10:6-9
Jesus was always firm in his teaching. He sees through the heart and speaks the truth without missing words or compromising the truth. So, when the Pharisees tried to test him on the issue of divorce, Jesus was firm as He went back to the beginning, the original plan of God. These three words, “From the beginning,” from our gospel reference today are key words for our day and age. It is important for us Christians to recognize not only the supernatural gifts God has given us but also the natural gifts.
The supernatural gifts are all those gifts given us by the Cross of Christ. His life, death and Resurrection poured forth upon us grace from Heaven and made holiness, salvation, and Heaven possible. But there is a whole other order of “gift” that God gave us that we often take for granted. That’s the gift of nature. Creation itself, the order of the Universe, our humanity and the natural design of God are all gifts. Science can do much to discover the secrets and mysteries of the natural world, but ultimately a full understanding of even the natural world is mysterious, deep, and awe-inspiring.
When Jesus says, “a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh” He speaks about two fundamental properties of marriage namely united and indissolubility. But divorce has become the order of the day.
Divorce has turn out to be a shortcut to dealing with persistent marital issues. Many of those who embrace this culture think that by liberating themselves from their partners, they will be free and happy and live-in peace. That is a pure deception. How many of the divorced persons are truly happy in the real sense of the word “happy”.
One aspect of the natural world God gave us is our sexuality. “God made them male and female…” This natural design is part of the glorious wisdom of the Creator and must be understood, loved, and respected fully. Being “male and female” is something that is obvious and naturally understood. Within each person are certain attributes, desires, and tendencies that go hand in hand with being either male or female.
In many ways, the uniqueness and complementarity of the sexes have been challenged and even disregarded at times, especially in our day and age. But deep down we all understand that being male or female is part of who we are. It makes up our very identity as a person and brings with it many blessings. Femininity and masculinity, at times, also can become distorted and confused. But in essence, these attributes of our personhood cannot be discarded or denied. In fact, embracing who we are in our nature is nothing more than being honest and enables us to continue down the road of true natural integrity.
Reflect, today, upon the many ways that being “male and female” are natural blessings from God. Reflect, also, upon the ways that these natural gifts are challenged and undermined in our world today. Embrace who you are, embrace who God made you to be, and let that natural gift from God flourish in your life.
Lord, I thank You for Your countless gifts. Thank You for the gift of grace won by Your Cross and thank You also for the gift of nature and for the way You made me. Help me to embrace my full identity in accord with Your design and, in that embrace, help me to continue to discover my very dignity. Jesus, I trust in You.