Thursday, June 2, 2016

Reflection: Mark 12:28-34

Thursday of the 9th Week of Ordinary Time – Mark 12:28-34

Today a scribe approaches Jesus and asks him: “What is the first of all the commandments?” Naturally Jesus replied what he had learned as a small child: “There is only one Lord and God.”  And you are “to love the Lord your God with your whole heart, soul and mind.”

I assume these words are very familiar to you. For many of us, these words were etched on in minds and hearts at a very young age. Hopefully, this continues to be true today. However, these words are so very familiar to us that we may not even hear them. In essence, Jesus asks only two things of us: to love God with all our hearts and to love our neighbor as ourselves.  Sounds simple, doesn’t it?

The challenge in Jesus’ statement is that our focus in life may be very divided.  Take a few minutes and honestly ask yourself: How many times a day do I think about God, Jesus, or the Spirit?  Do I take or make time to pray every day?  Do I pray once, twice, several times a day, or not at all?   Then ask yourself: Am I happy with my responses?  If not, do you want to make more effort to pray and spend time with God, Jesus, or the Spirit?  Or are you content with your life as it is?

Now that you have reflected on your relationship with God, Jesus, and the Spirit, ask yourself: How do I strive to love my family members, my neighbor, my co-workers or someone I happen to meet on the street?  Do I consciously strive to love every person I encounter, even the individuals I may not like?

Hopefully, the time we spend with God each day makes us more aware of the people we encounter every day.   God’s love for us and our love for God should flow out from us to the individuals and the people with whom we interact, work and live.

Today I invite you to be mindful of the people you encounter.  Strive to be loving and kind to every individual with whom you interact.  You may find that other people will be loving and kind to you also.  “What goes around typically comes around!”

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