July 12th, 2022

The Gospel according to Matthew (11:20-24) 

Jesus began to reproach the towns
where most of his mighty deeds had been done,
since they had not repented.
“Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida!
For if the mighty deeds done in your midst
had been done in Tyre and Sidon,
they would long ago have repented in sackcloth and ashes.
But I tell you, it will be more tolerable
for Tyre and Sidon on the day of judgment than for you.
And as for you, Capernaum:

Will you be exalted to heaven?
You will go down to the nether world.

For if the mighty deeds done in your midst had been done in Sodom,
it would have remained until this day.
But I tell you, it will be more tolerable
for the land of Sodom on the day of judgment than for you.”


In today’s Gospel, we get a sense of Jesus the Just Judge.  He did not hold back at all in His words of judgment and condemnation of the towns of Chorazin, Bethsaida and Capernaum.  If I were one of those who lived in one of those towns, I would be shaking in my boots!

The thing is that Jesus was expressing his frustration at those towns not because He wanted them to be destroyed or punished, but because He wanted them to repent and to live according to His Gospel.  It’s like the frustration we feel as a parent when our teenaged (or older) son or daughter seems to be choosing the wrong path and all we want as the parent is for the child to choose better.  It’s very hard to see our children choosing a path that (in our view) leads them to more pain and difficulty.  We as parents have more knowledge and wisdom, but how did we get that wisdom?  By making mistakes and choosing wrong paths ourselves, right?  Maybe all we can do is pray that our children find the path that is right for them, and that ultimately leads them to God.

God has such love and care for each of us, His children.  He longs for us to choose to follow Him, because, ultimately, that will lead us to heaven, and it will also lead us to share that love with everyone.  Those of us who are blessed with faith do have this awesome responsibility, as we *know* who God is.  Think of those around us who don’t have faith.  To them, it is all about today.  It is up to each of us, by the way we live our lives, to show that there is more than just today.  Now, we’re not saying that you have to go and convince others of the faith, but in truth, the way we can do that is to do as St Francis once said: “preach the Gospel at all times, and when necessary, use words.”

Jesus wants all humanity to be with Him and the saints in heaven forever.  He wants all of us, His disciples, to yearn like He does, that all will be saved and that all will know Him.  Each of us has a part to play to share the Gospel, and to draw everyone closer to the same loving Lord who created us all.  May we do what we can today to share that love and “live the Gospel by the way we live our lives!”

Action for the Day:

Ask God today for the opportunity to just be a good disciple of Jesus today, and to just love those whom God places in your path.

If you would like to hear this reflection, click the link below! 

Leave a Reply