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Scripture Reflections - July 9
14th Sunday in Ordinary Time


READINGS

Zechariah 9:9-10
Romans 8: 9, 11-13
Matthew 11: 25-30

Archives Msgr Paul E. Whitmore
Msgr. Paul E. Whitmore

After a long, dark winter,  we welcome the warmth of summer and the brighter evenings.

Still, our concern for climate change, and the increasing divisions and uncivil behaviours in society,  concern all of us,

The shadow of a world coming apart at the seams hangs over us like a dark cloud.

There is unrest, if not outright war, in so many nations.   Peace and harmony seem like an impossible dream.  
In today’s first reading, Zechariah prophecies a coming Messiah who will bring us cause for rejoicing.    Of course, Zechariah was ridiculed and thought insane in his time.

It wasn’t any better when centuries later, the Son of God actually came into the land of Israel.

In today’s Gospel, Jesus laments the blindness and rejection of the learned ones - pharisees, scribes, sadducees.  Jesus was hurt and angered by their hostility. 

Only the simple and uneducated seemed to believe His words and His mighty deeds of healing. 

Jesus loved ordinary people, and He loved children, their innocence and their incredible openness to the things of God.

They readily believe in angels and the beauty of art and music much more than adults do.  

Jesus found consolation in children and the child-like. He promised the kingdom of heaven for such as these.         

It’s no different in our times.   After all, our country was founded on a dream.  Otherwise we would not have celebrated the Fourth of July this past weekend.  America’s dream is very like God’s dream and His plan for us.   

We are all entitled to be dreamers.  We must never give up hope that God’s dream of peace will come true.
Freedom for all, born and unborn. 

Our second reading urges us to live in the Holy Spirit, rather than in the “flesh”, meaning living in sin which keeps us in slavery to the “flesh”   

To live in the Spirit means to let our flesh be transformed into its true freedom.  

As members of Christ, every good individual action strengthens  the whole person.

More prayer, more getting out of ourselves to think of other people’s needs, brings lightness of heart and soul.
When we falter, we need only think of Jesus’ promise:

“Come to me all you who labor and are heavily burdened and I will give you rest….for my yoke is easy, and my burden is light”.   

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