Gospel Reflection for Sunday the 11th of July 2021
15th Sunday in Ordinary Time
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If you are hearing this then you have been called! Yes, I mean you!
There is no doubt that if you have found your way to a Youth 2000 meeting or to the Youth 2000 website to hear this reflection then God is working in your life. Somehow you are attracted to God. And more than that… it is not just coming from you. God is has called you to this moment. You are responding, you are answering God speaking to your heart.
Last week in the Gospel we heard about the people who wouldn’t accept Jesus, the people who didn’t truly listen or respond to the Lord, who were blind to his divinity and fell into the pitfall of the superficiality of the world. This week, we are hearing about the ones Jesus “summons”. That is the word the Gospel uses – Summoned. Yes, God is summoning you. Can you believe it? God is demanding your presence! Sometimes the Bible uses the word “chosen” – you have been chosen!
For lots of people the thought of being picked or chosen can be a challenging experience. There is a lot of emotions and anxiety. For a lot of people they think, “what if I am not chosen” or they think “there must be a mistake for me to be chosen, because I am not choosable enough”. In social media speak it translates as “what if I am not liked” or “people won’t like this part of me”. And this same thought can play out in their relationships all day.
It’s thoughts of “I’m not BLIP enough”. I’m not tall enough, I’m not pretty enough, I’m not built enough, I’m not skinny enough, I’m not sporty enough, I’m not cool enough… Blip blip blip enough.
For some people with all of this background comparison and anxiety going on it can be really difficult to get to really thinking and believing and HEARING the voice of God in their heart. To hear God saying: “Yes, I like you!” The fundamental deep down LIKE that God gives us forever and always when he chooses us. We only need this one like.
We have all seen countless movies where there is an unlikely hero. The person that at the beginning of the movie doesn’t seem like someone worthy of public admiration and then as the movie plays out and comes to a conclusion the unlikely hero takes centre stage and we are made to realise that the superficial judgements of others could have stopped them from reaching their potential but somehow the beauty inside them has shone through and they are recognised for who the are, they are chosen and special.
That narrative for the unlikely hero is so popular in movies and stories because it resonates so deeply with our hearts. IT is SO TRUE. There is an unlikely hero inside you. It is you! Everyone is someone. You are the unlikely hero of your own life.
Yes we all have faults and failings and things we can improve on but fundamentally God chooses you for you, God likes you for you, for the way you are, for the person you are.
Thomas the doubter, Peter the denier, Matthew the tax collector, the 12 people that Jesus summoned as his apostles were all not blip enough but they were ENOUGH. God chose them. And you? What about you, are you enough for God. Despite thoughts to the contrary, yes! And God chooses you too. Already you are responding to his call to you by seeking him.
This evening in front of the blessed sacrament God is looking at you and your life and he sees everything, even stuff you are afraid to reveal, and he likes you.
When we go to a sacramental confession with a priest do you think you are telling God your sins like he doesn’t know them already? No! The wonder of confessions is that God forgives us as an act of compassion that FINALLY we are able to let go of our fear and open up to him. To say sorry for not being ourselves, for not believing that we were loved so much and chosen by God.
But he knew it all already, a good confession is the one that we realise that he chooses us again.
So tonight rejoice before God in the Blessed Sacrament because he is the one that called you here, he is calling to your heart to tell you that he likes you and that you have been chosen by him.
Don’t hold back for fear or worry. You are enough for him, he has summoned you!
-Fr Declan Lohan