Feb. 12, 2017 - 6th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A
Saint Martin de Tours Catholic Church
After almost six years of being together, many of you have discovered that my YES means YES and that my NO means NO.
Now this is a difficult thing to do: letting YES be YES and NO be NO. And sometimes it’s a difficult thing to take. I know that. But isn’t it better to know where you truly stand?
I think so, because the Lord wants our YES to mean YES and our NO to mean NO. When we bring our prayer to the Lord, the Lord wants honesty and humility.
To help us be honest and humble, the Lord sets before us choices.
Good and Evil
Life and Death
Keeping the Commandments or Breaking the Commandments
The Lord wants us to choose. And we know which side we are supposed to choose. But it is more than just a legalistic choosing of one side or the other.
Jesus also wants to know what’s happening inside. Jesus wants to know what is happening in our hearts.
It’s not just you shall not kill. It’s you shall not kill with your heart. No anger. No resentment. No jealousy. No mean spiritedness. No harsh words.
It’s a terrible thing to see one person kill another person’s spirit with cruel words.
What is a better choice? A better choice is to recognize that God is the creator of every human person. And as a result, every human person should be treated with respect and dignity. We should struggle to kill ‘em with kindness and be more charitable in our thoughts and speech.
It’s not just you shall not commit adultery. It’s you shall not commit adultery in your heart. No lust. No manipulation for personal gain. No using someone for personal pleasure. No toying with another’s emotions.
Sometimes we use others for a moment of pleasure. This manipulation, this violation can leave scars that take years to heal.
What is a better choice? A better choice is to be clean of heart, to struggle to avoid the temptation to look lustfully at others. Again, to see everyone as a human person, not as some object to be had or conquered.
It is difficult to let our YES mean YES and our NO mean NO.
When our YES means YES and our NO means NO, we stand on the side of truth, we stand on the integrity.
When we choose life, when we choose good, when we keep the commandments, we stand on the side of the Lord.