Monday, July 02, 2018
13th Week in
1st Reading: Amos 2:6-10; 13-16
Gospel: Mt 8:18-22
When Jesus saw the crowd press around him, he gave orders to cross to the other shore. A teacher of the Law approached him and said, “Master, I will follow you wherever you go.” Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.”
Another disciple said to him, “Lord, let me go and bury my father first.” But Jesus answered him, “Follow me, and let the dead bury their own dead.”
(Daily Gospel in the
Assimilated Life Experience)
About ten years ago, I was Manila-bound to be in Makati for the preparatory sessions for delegates to the World Youth Day in Australia. With only a few mi-nutes to go through airport security check I lost my sense of direction. I ended up at the pre-departure area of a-nother airline. I rushed out and asked for directions from a man in white uniform. He gave me an arrogant look. He could just have replied with, “I don’t know”. Then one airport personnel nearby who must have overheard my question told me to follow that arrogant man. I had no choice. I may not like him but I had to follow him. He was my pilot!
Today’s Gospel story is about two persons wanting to follow Jesus. The first guy got this curt reply: “Foxes have holes and birds have nests, but the son of man has nowhere to lay his head.” Jesus was not being arrogant but straightforward. He told him that he could not offer him any of the luxuries he was expecting. The second guy got a different treatment. Jesus said to him, “Follow me, and let the dead bury their own dead.” That was because the man imposed a condition to his discipleship. He’d follow Jesus but only after he had buried his father. By disapproving the scheme Jesus was reminding the man that there are important things in life that a serious believer cannot postpone.
Some of us are like the first guy who followed Christ for convenience. Others are like the second guy. They postpone following Christ to a future time after they are done with their worldly concerns. Who of the two actually followed Jesus for real in the end? The Gospel is silent about this. But reflecting on my experience with that arrogant pilot, I think it was best that both did not follow Christ until they had settled their personal issues. Going to heaven is not like being in the same flight with the pilot the passengers dislike. In flying to heaven, Jesus is the pilot. Nobody joins the flight unless he loves Jesus unconditionally. – (Atty.) Rev. Fr. Dan Domingo P. delos Angeles, Jr., DM. Email: email@example.com.
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