By Fr Antony Christy, SDB –
The 3P Recipe: Proclaim, Practice and be Prepared!
5th Sunday in Ordinary Time: 4th February, 2018
Job 7:1-4,6,7; 1 Cor 9: 16-19, 22,23; Mk 1: 29-39
Remember those words of Mahatma Gandhi – “I like your Christ; but I dont like your Christians. Because your Christians are so unlike your Christ”. That man had the clue to what it means to be Christians – it is to be Christ like!
To Live Life Christ-like…that is the call that the Word gives us today. To live for the Gospel, to live for the Reign, to live for the People of God and to love everyone with your heart and soul: that is the life task given to you and me, to everyone called in the name of Christ.
Proclaim to the world that God is love! Live that love and spread it around, a true and genuine love that does not possess but a love that brings the whole world together. A love that reaches out, heals, frees, unites, enhances, enriches and rends every one whole. We hear a lot of voices today, that claim to be “christian” but speak of things other than love: they speak of condemnation, they speak of vengeance, they speak of violence, they speak of closing in, they speak of rejection of people…are they truly Christian? Proclaim..proclaim love, proclaim peace, proclaim wholeness – only that is Christ like!
When you proclaim that, you will have trouble. Because there are forces that stand for a heartless egoism, a selfish development, an inhuman exploitation and an unbridled avarice! Now you will become the odd one out, when you speak of love and live for it. But still you will do it: because that is what you are called for: to live life Christ-like!
The need is to answer three questions-
First of all, to which band do I belong: Am I truly an apostle of love? Only I can answer the question regarding the deepest motivations of my soul. I may be so by name, I may even appear so – but whether I am or not in reality: only I know, apart from the Lord who knows everything!
Secondly: If I proclaim the message of the Reign, the Gospel of love, does my style of life coincide with the proclamation. In simple words, do I walk the talk? Is there that moral integrity within me because of which I can command the evil forces with authority and they will go silenced before me! The authority that Jesus had before the demons and all other forces that challenged the wholeness of life.
Thirdly: If I identify myself with Christ and Christ’s message, what do I do on a daily basis to justify my identity, stay relevant to my self-claim and be counted in that number? Will my lifestyle speak before my words ever leave my tongue? Will the values I stand for, make me stand before the Lord or cringe at His sight? Have I felt the burden of the Reign within my heart, an urgency that unsettles my heart, a passion that sets me afire?
May be today, these questions will orient us to respond to the call that the Word gives us: to live life Christ-like!
Fr Antony Christy is a Salesian Priest from 2005, who has a Masters in Philosophy (specialisation in Religion) and a Masters in Theology (Specialisation in Catechetics). He is currently pursuing his doctoral research in Theology at Salesian Pontifical University, Rome. Walking with the Young towards a World of Peace and Dialogue is the passion that fires him on.