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Thursday, February 18, 2021

Obedience, a hidden treasure says Fr Ebido - ITREALMS

Lenten Sermon@ITREALMS ... making leadership SENSE with digital news!
Thursday after Ash Wednesday (February 18/2021) 
Your Daily BlessingMay God grace multiply in you this day fulfilling his perfect will in you. Amen.
Read Deuteronomy 30:15-30; LK 9:22-25; Ps 1. 

Narration: Yesterday I touched on the value of obedience, even ‘blind obedience’ in solving complex spiritual and moral problems. For centuries spiritual masters and theologians struggled to understand this, and their conclusions simply echo that of scripture: “obedience is better than sacrifice.” 


How do we understand this especially if we consider ‘sacrifice’ as an aspect of love? Well, Jesus made it clear: “if you love me, keep my commandments (Jn 14:15). Love is proved by obedience. In the first reading above, Moses presents Israel with two choices: to obey the law and enjoy “life and prosperity” as their reward, or do their own will and be sure to harvest “death and doom”. They consistently chose to do their own will (not loving God) and we can confirm from history that Moses’ words were more than fulfilled in them. Their return to nationhood after the dispersal of 70AD for killing the righteous one is the supreme act of God’s mercy.

ALSO READ: 
Ebido: Obedience solves complex questions - ITREALMS


Israel is an archetype. In cosmic time, each of us must live out our own choices, just like the Israelites: to obey God or to do our own will. In the course of time, God’s justice and mercy are revealed in us. The Gospel says, “anyone who loves his life loses it…” Put differently, it means, anyone who loves to do his will loses his real life in the end. Yet, if we must live an authentic life, we have to ‘deny ourselves, take up our cross and follow a ‘crucified savior’! Sounds like an oxymoron which we unconsciously process as ‘stupid’, ‘naïve’ or ‘crazy’ idea, irrespective of our faith confessions! 

Any surprise we often fail to obey, and thereby fail to love God as we ought? But that is what makes ‘obedience’ a hidden treasure! It reveals the obedient person as trusting God despite the seeming contradictions of life: unanswered prayers, prosperity of the wicked, suffering of the just man. This need to trust God enough to obey him is what Lenten season is about. Let us rediscover our true pathways to life’s blessings.
 
PRAYER: Dear Lord, I want to obey you but often find myself doing what my selfish desires dictates. Please help me by your grace to turn a new leaf and truly love you by obeying your commands. Amen
 

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