26th Sunday in Ordinary Time


Are you with Christ or not?  Do you do wonderful deeds in the name of Christ?  Do you welcome others in the name of Christ?

Jesus speaks in the readings this Sunday of being for Him and being against Him.  From the first reading and the first half of the Gospel we can see that we need to be careful about trying to force other believers into our mold of Catholicism.  During this political season it has been extremely easy to do this.  We unite our politics and our religion all too often.  If you believe and yet don’t follow my method of how to best do mighty deeds for the Lord then you need to stop.  We even go to the extreme more and more and say if you don’t pray like me then you are not following Christ.  We try to silence and drown out others who are proclaiming the message, who are doing mighty deeds all so we can proclaim in our way, so we can be the ones doing the mighty deeds.  How can you who pray in charismatic ways doing mighty deeds and proclaiming the lord, or you who only wants to use Latin, or you with the guitar music, or you with so many rosaries, or you who only seem to meditate?  Why do we get so concerned about these externals?  Why don’t we work together, support each other, realize that “those who are not against us are for us.”

However, we also need to realize when there are those who are against us.  As Christ says, “whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him if a great millstone were put around his neck and he were thrown into the sea.”  We do need to know those that are out there, even in the name of Christ, who are causing and promoting others to sin.  When intrinsic evil is promoted it must be rooted out and countered.  We can not stand by as the most innocent among us are being killed.  Human dignity must be protected.  We like to hide behind a lesser good in order to promote evil and this must stop.  For example, we utilize freedom and choice to hide behind in order to promote the death and destruction of the innocent.  We try to deny that the unborn child is a life.  We try to make a positive to hide the negative.

Jesus says if your hand causes you to sin then cut it off.  This is not because the hand is bad.  Jesus does not want us to going around destroying parts of our body, but he does want to show us how important our decisions and moral actions are.  It is easy to fall to an argument that sounds like accepting a moral good.  It is easy to fall prey looking at the good of what a hand is, while ignoring that it is causing us to sin.  We can not allow the good of freedom, the good of choice to supersede the right and dignity of life.  This is true at conception, this is true at the end of life.  This good of freedom and choice is like the hand that is causing us to sin.  We must uphold true good, while avoiding intrinsic evils.  We must not allow sin to live in our lives.

What in your life, what in my life, is causing us to sin?  In your prayers this week ask the Lord to show what is causing us to sin.  Go to the sacrament of reconciliation and have god rid your life of sin.  Seek in prayer the roots of these sins, and cut them out of your life.  Even if these are near and dear to us, if they are like our own hand, our own eyes, we must cut out that which causes sin in our lives.

Do good, be holy, and store up treasures in heaven instead of on earth!


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