12th Sunday of the year, cycle C

Give like Jesus

 Luke 9:18-24

The history of Israel has been marked by so much destruction; but is also marked by so much hope and consolation.

The world may opt to destroy it; but Someone else is building it up, filling it with kindness and love.  He promises unity and salvation for the people of Israel.

Now, this verse in Zechariah caught my attention, "They will look on the one whom they have pierced; they will mourn for him as for an only son, and weep for him as people weep for a first-born child."  Surely it is a prophecy attributed to what is to come - Jesus Christ and through him, "a fountain will be opened for the House of David and the citizens of Jerusalem, for sin and impurity." (Zechariah 12:10-11,13:1)

Grant us to know the real blessing we have just received!  While people are thinking of money, fame, or reputation, the Son of God definitively killed evil with the power of Sacrifice and offerings!  If we only know who Jesus and what he continues to do for us and our families, we would never be continuing what we have been doing today.

People who fail to know Jesus end up failing to know themselves.  That is why some Catholics are no better off than corrupt people.  Despite all their wealth, they could not lead another to salvation.

Let not our being Church be corrupted to the level only of prayer without any commitment to change the world.  Like Jesus, let us carry our crosses and follow him.  As he offered himself all for our sake, let us also offer ourselves for the sake of the salvation of others.  This is the secret of true life, in the way we offer ourselves for the sake of others.

So, what can we offer?
1.  Let us give what we have.  We always have a sufficient amount of time, talent, and treasure.  Don't look with envy at the backyard of our rich neighbor.  We have more than what we think we have.  And if we believe that what we have comes from God, then everything becomes a gift and life becomes an act of thanksgiving.
2. Let us give what is valuable to us.  It is easy to give what is excess, what is to be thrown away.  When we give to God and for his work, make sure we are giving the best gifts that are valuable to us simply because God deserves it.  Give our lives; give our children to the Lord.
3.  Give in advance.  There is such a thing as planned giving.  Give before we own it for ourselves.  Remember, it is not ours in the first place.

Let our giving reflect the giving of our Lord Jesus Christ.  To save us, he had to offer everything.  And so we do the same.  Imagine a community of givers!  Nobody is found wanting!