REFLECTION FOR TODAY
July 27, 2021
By Fr. Andrew Ibegbulem, OSA
“Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the Kingdom of their Father. Whoever has ears ought to hear.” Matt. 13:43
Jesus’ parable of the weeds sown among grain like all the parables of Jesus calls us to prayerfully reflect on our part as pre-condition to receiving his revelation. In our world we have both the good and the bad, those who try to follow Jesus with their whole heart, and those who are indifferent to God.
Our gospel reference today, which concludes the explanation of Jesus to the parable speak of the reward of fidelity and calls us to listen and be aware of the signs of the time. It points to the reward the children of the Kingdom will receive, just as at the end of time, the children of the evil one will be condemned and sent “into the fiery furnace, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.”
In this parable the Sower is the Son of Man, Jesus, and the seed He sows are the children of the Kingdom, which includes all those who are in a state of grace. The evil one also sows his “children,” which refers to all of those who live evil lives that are contrary to the will of God.
The result of being the Children of the Kingdom is quite hopeful. “Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the Kingdom of their Father.” This promise from our Lord should be pondered, believed, and become the driving force of our hope in life.
Hope is an essential virtue that we often do not speak of enough. The gift of hope is not simply wishful thinking, such as when one hopes they win the lotto. The theological virtue of hope is a gift from God that is based on truth. The truth that it is based on is the promise of eternal life in Heaven if we accept all that God speaks to us and if we fulfill His glorious will in our lives.
As Christian, the best way to strengthen the virtue of theological hope in our lives is to become more and more certain of the truthful promise of our Lord. We need to understand Heaven and the infinite value we receive by obtaining it. If we truly understood what Jesus was promising us, we would become so intensely driven to do all that He commands us to do that this would become the single focus of our life. The hope would become a strength so strong that we would become consumed with doing anything and everything necessary to obtain such a reward.
Reflect, today, upon the depth of hope you have in your life. How driven are you by the promises made by our Lord? How clearly do you understand those promises? If you struggle with hope, then spend more time on the end reward that is promised you by Jesus. Believe what He says and make that end goal the central focus of your life.
Lord Jesus, You are the King, who invites all people to share in the glories of Heaven. You promise us that if we are faithful, we will shine like the sun for all eternity. Help me to understand this glorious gift so that it becomes the single object of my hope and the drive of all that I do in life. Jesus, I trust in You.