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31 Sunday in Ordinary Time 30.10.2016

Dear sisters and brothers,

In three more Sundays, the Church will be entering into another liturgical year. In today’s reflection, the Church reminds us of the nature of God’s mercy.
In spite of our weaknesses and sins, God still loves all of us and is ever ready to dwell with us.

The story of Zacchaeus in today’s gospel, is a true indication that Jesus Christ comes to seek and save not only the righteous, but also those that are lost. He keeps coming to us through various means. He comes our way through our neighbours, the poor, sacraments [the Holy Eucharist], and the entire creation. The important questions are: Do we see him? do we even know that he comes our way? what efforts do we make to have a glimpse of him? or to have a life changing encounter with him as Zacchaeus did? Irrespective of the human obstacles that made it extremely difficult for Zacchaeus to see Jesus who was passing, his determination, courage and ability to explore other options saw him through. Unlike most of us, he refused to be intimidated by the crowd. He did not accept his height as a hindrance.

In life, many things prevent us from encountering Jesus Christ; money, jobs, etc. Frantic efforts, as Zacchaeus did to catch a glimpse of Jesus, can also see us through. Therefore, let us rise above all obstacles that prevent our divine encounter with the Lord. Paul advised Timothy: “Do not allow anyone to look down on you because you are young” (I Tim 4, 12). Likewise, we should not allow any weakness or short coming to become a hindrance for us not to achieve our goals. We can be positively desperate towards connecting with Jesus who comes our way every day of our life.

Rather than giving up because of fear or timidity, we can explore other possible avenues. Zacchaeus decided to climb a thorny sycamore tree. We have other options in life other than the failed ones that made our life miserable.

Never you give in to that rough road of life, tearing relationships apart, marriages, family challenges, sickness, old age, etc. Try other options, and you may be surprised that they will take you to the apex of your success and happiness in life. Humility will help us bend down and see other options available to us in life without giving up. Try to ignore distractions and detractors to success and happiness. These may come in form of: regrets, past life styles, complaints, sympathizers, gossipers, etc. The crowd did the same to Zacchaeus but he never gave up.

However, our willingness to turn over a new leaf in life and say we are sorry for the wrong we committed will save us. Zacchaeus promised Jesus: “…If I have cheated anybody I will pay him back four times the amount…!” If we do this sincerely from our heart, Jesus Christ in turn, will bring salvation to us.

Fr. Kevin

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Nov 4, 2016 31 Sunday in Ordinary Time 30.10.2016 Listen Download