Fr. Aidan Writes:
The second reading at Mass this weekend (Heb 412-13) gives us the great image of the Word of God being like a penetrating two edged sword. The next sentence includes, ‘everything is naked and exposed to the eyes of him to whom we must render account”. When I celebrate the Stations of the Cross, it is always station 10, when Jesus is stripped
of his garments, that hits home for me. I recognize that these remarks from the letter to the Hebrews applied to Jesus too. He is exposed to render account; Jesus was fully naked and humiliated, no loin cloth. When we hear the Word of God in church or in our own bible study, we know of its authority because Jesus is the Word of God that renders account not only for his completion of His Father’s mission but also for our sins.
But we are also exposed by the word of God. In the gospel today the young man, a good man, is full of his virtue but blind to that aspect of his reality which holds him back from truly following with his whole heart. He treasured his treasure and could not let it go to gain the true treasure in heaven.
Perhaps we should allow ourselves to be vulnerable to the point of exposure before the Word of God so that we can recognize what holds us back from wholeheartedly following Jesus. A good start is to never listen or read the Word of God and say, “I have heard this piece, I know what it is all about”. We don’t. The power of the Word of God is that it speaks afresh to each of us in our current context; we have to be open to hear. Always be open, vulnerable, exposed to what the Holy Spirit through the Word of God is saying to you. When we are naked in this way, there is no hiding behind our virtue and the encounter can be profoundly intimate and transformative. We must make sure when we meet the word of God that our faces do not fall and we do not walk away sad.
May God bless you, your families, and the week ahead,
Fr Aidan Peter