" ITREALMS: Fr Ebido cautions about 'squandered opportunities' - ITREALMS

Saturday, March 06, 2021

Fr Ebido cautions about 'squandered opportunities' - ITREALMS

Lenten Sermon@ITREALMS ... making leadership SENSE with digital news!
Saturday, Second Week of Lent B (March 6/2021) 

Your Daily BlessingMay the Lord heal you of hidden sins, of self-righteousness, hatred and unforgiveness! Amen.

Read Read: Micah 7:14-20; LK 15:1-3, 11-32; pray Psalm 103[102].

NARRATION: Will you be scandalized if I say that the parent who has a prodigal child is MORE blessed than one who has none? The reason is hidden in the difference between the two sons we find in the Gospel.

Often the emphasis is on the prodigal son, but hardly do we realize that what happened to the first son was much worse! 

Though he didn’t squander his father’s fortunes, but he ‘squandered opportunities’ for inner growth in the knowledge and love of his father. 

Though he never left home, worked very close to his father, but instead of growing in knowledge of him so as to be ‘like’ him, he was the opposite of his father. His was ‘forced obedience’ (he called it “slaving” for him) that filled him with bitterness and resentment. 

Hence, he never learnt the ‘joy of compassion’ or why his father has to ‘celebrate’ for a repentant son. 

How can he understand why there is joy in heaven for one repentant sinner?

Envy and hatred has eaten up his soul such that if he had his chance, he would prefer that his younger brother rots in hell!
The first son is the archetype of all those who use religion to cover up wickedness - a heart that is cold, mean, and ruthless. They hardly forgive any offense. They keep pointing accusing fingers at “sinners” (prodigals), while they hardly realize they are the ‘sinners-in- chief!’ 

ALSO READ: Fr. Ebido: God's plan for you is amazing - ITREALMS

They spread wickedness around by influencing others to be like them anytime their victims are tempted to retaliate. 

It is easier to transform 1000 prodigals than it takes to change one self-righteous elder brother! For  the same reasons parents who have born the pains of a prodigal child stand in a relatively more ‘blessed’ place than one who haven’t because of opportunities for growth in compassion and unconditional love it provides them. 

They understand sin better, and along with it virtues like patience, forgiveness, prayerfulness, etc. So they often have more spiritual depth.
PRAYER: Merciful father, I quickly condemn the prodigal son for his obvious sins, while overlooking my more deadly hidden sins of self-righteousness, envy, hatred, and unforgiveness that prefer that people perish than repent. Save me my God!

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