Twentieth Sunday in Ordinary Time (A)
1. People who seek the ways of the Lord are a happy people. The Book of Proverbs tells us,
Man may make plans in his heart, but what the tongue utters is from the LORD. All the ways of a man may be pure in his own eyes, but it is the LORD who proves the spirit. Entrust your works to the LORD, and your plans will succeed. The LORD has made everything for his own ends (1-4).
a) People who seek the ways of the Lord are happy and content with what they have. They make use of the things that they have for their good, for the good of others and for the glory of God.
b) Misery comes to a person when he looks at and broods over the little that he has, the little that he has to contribute to the church or to the government or to the needy, and not at the blessings that he receives and the greater part that is left for him and his family.
c) Happiness generates happiness. Only when people observe what is right and do what is just, as Isaiah tells us today, does salvation of the Lord come and His justice revealed to them.
2. God hears and grants the prayer of the lowly, and shies away from the prayer of the proud and deceitful.
a) The humble are those who acknowledge God as their creator and provider. The Canaanite woman saw in Jesus the power of God to bring healing to her daughter. She did not complain. She only asked for what she needed. She saw in Jesus His capacity to re-create the situation in her family for a happy life.
b) In that encounter with Jesus, she proclaimed that she and the pagan nations would not only watch the good things that Jesus was doing and providing for the people, but also participate in the goodness and mercy of God for all.
c) She also proclaimed that the proud, deceitful and the impatient, like the Scribes, the Pharisees and those who despised the poor, would not share in God’s blessings and goodness.
3. The gifts and the call of God are irrevocable. They are like the rain and snow that fall to the ground and do not return to the heavens without having performed their purpose.
a) God’s gifts and call are free. God wants that all men and women accept His gifts, not primarily for themselves, because that is selfish, but ultimately for the community, because that is love.
b) Acceptance of God’s gifts and call demands understanding of God’s logic: that they are not for the self alone, but for the use of the community, especially the needy, and for the glory of God.
c) Use of God’s gifts and call brings to all the awareness that God utilizes people to bring His presence to all creation, and proclaim that every person is a manifestation of His love and that all will return to Him to receive the inheritance promised to all the faithful.
We realize that God is present in everything. He is more than what we think He is. He can provide us with more than what we think He can. He gives us His Spirit and feeds us with the Body and Blood of His Son Jesus in the Eucharist that we celebrate. So, let us be content with what we have and with what we are. He is in us and among us.
So whatever our situation and condition, if we come to Jesus with a sincere heart, He will never turn away from us. He will accept us. He will provide graces for us to be what we are and what we can and should be, and give us the strength to perform what you have to do.
All the wisdom, gifts and blessings that we have are our necessary means to fulfill His call to become His instruments to bring joy, love and peace to the world, and lead all men to God. So we all proclaimed in the Responsorial Psalm, “O God, let all the nations praise you!”