The Old Testament and Gospel readings tell us about hospitality, about opening ourselves to serving God and others
Reflections on the readings for the Sixteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time (July 17, 2022): GN 18:1-10a; PS 15:2-3, 3-4, 5; COL 1:24-28; LK 10:38-42
MISSIO offers “Mission In Scripture” to nurture a missionary heart, providing reflections on the missionary themes in the readings of Sundays, Feast Days and Holy Days.
From St. Paul we also hear about the importance of sharing the gift of faith.
Abraham, Sarah, Paul, Martha, Mary. Today we hear about good and holy men and women who loved and served God with fidelity and devotion. Even so, we hear in the Gospel how Martha managed to get off track by concentrating on things that were good in themselves, but should not have been her main focus. For all of us who seek God’s will, He alone must be the center of our thoughts, actions and choices. This does not mean that we put the needs of others -- or ourselves -- aside. On the contrary, God wants us to express our love for Him not only in prayer, adoration and other direct ways, but also by tending to the spiritual and material concerns of His people. In the Letter to the Colossians attributed to St. Paul we hear about the sufferings that he willingly endured in order to bring the Good News to many people in many places. He was fulfilling the mission given him by Christ in a very active way. “I am a minister in accordance with God’s stewardship given to me to bring to completion for you the word of God, the mystery hidden from ages and from generations past. Now it has been manifested to His holy ones, to whom God chose to make known the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; it is Christ in you, the hope for glory. It is He whom we proclaim, admonishing everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom, that we may present everyone perfect in Christ” (Colossians 1:25-28).
So we all need to balance our lives according to God’s plan for us. Through quiet attentiveness in meditation, at Mass, in reading Scripture and other spiritual works, perhaps taking a walk in a park or a time out on the shore of a lake. All these are valuable if we expect our active service to our brothers and sisters to spring from a dynamic, loving relationship with the Blessed Trinity -- Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. God is always the better part -- we just need to recognize how He wants us to accept and rejoice in it, at any given moment.
Suggested missionary action: Today is a good time to think about the various ways we have received the gift of faith from others, sometimes in the form of gracious hospitality. Let us be willing to preach our belief in Christ to others not only in words, but also in deeds of kindness and charity.