Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Wednesday, Third Week of Lent '09: Jesus and the Law
Okay, so today I read:
"Jesus said, "I have come not to abolish the law, but to fulfill it. Amen, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or the smallest part of a letter will pass from the law until all things have taken place. Therefore, whoever breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do so will be called least in the kingdom of heaven. But whoever obeys and teaches these commandments will be greatest in the kingdom of heaven.'"
I'm sad to say I don't spend a lot of time thinking on this passage of Scripture. Sure, a lot of my time is consumed meditating on Jesus, but there's a big disconnect when it comes Him and the law. So when I hear, "I have come not to abolish the law, but to fulfill it," the words startle and sober me.
What can they mean? I mean really? What about those of us who embrace grace (thank God!), but--uh oh--aren't particularly careful about how we live? Have we become so free in our thinking that we choose to live our lives in God cafeteria style, picking and choosing only what tastes good? In The King, Crucified and Risen, Fr. Groeschel's meditation today suggested that many are doing just that. Am I? I wondered. Have I passed over Jesus' words, "If you love me keep my commandments," the way I'd skip the spiritual equivalent of steamed Brussels sprouts in the cafeteria of the soul? I don't care for Brussels sprouts at all!
I'm grateful that Fr. Groeshel, after his smackdown, offered an effective remedy for apathy to the law Jesus came to fulfill. He said the Christian conscience is informed by the teaching of the Gospels of Christ, and the scriptures in general. He suggested a long look at the Sermon on the Mount. Go ahead. Read the whole thing, Matthew chapters 5 through 7. Read it with all the devotion you can muster. I know I'll be doing so in the days to come. I'd be pretty lost if left to my devices in the Old Testament, but I've always loved the Sermon on the Mount. That, I can take to heart, Lord, have mercy on me. That, I can try to live.
And the sermon is nothing to sneeze at!
I guess what I got out of today's meditations is that it all points to Christ. The entire Bible, from Genesis to Revelation. All I believe and do should be rooted in Him. I love that moment in Mass when the priest holds up the Body and Blood of Christ and says, "For it is through Him, with Him, in Him, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, all glory and honor is Yours Almighty Father, forever and ever." Through Him, with Him, in Him. The words make me swoon.
The best thing I can do is be like John the Beloved, and lay my head upon the Lord's breast. I'm certain there I'll hear his heartbeat for the poor, the forgotten, and the disenfranchised. After all, Jesus himself was all those things. And I'll hear His heart to love, love, love you, and even myself.
I don't know about you, but I needed the reminder.
Posted by ragamuffin diva at 11:38 PM