Saturday, November 06, 2010

All Are Alive

November 7, 2010
Thirty-second Sunday in Ordinary Time

By Rev. Joe McCloskey, SJ

"It is my choice to die at the hands of men with the God-given hope of being restored to life by him; but for you, there will be no resurrection to life." 2 Maccabees 7:14

But the Lord is faithful; he will strengthen you and guard you from the evil one. We are confident of you in the Lord that what we instruct you, you (both) are doing and will continue to do. May the Lord direct your hearts to the love of God and to the endurance of Christ. 2 Thessalonians 3-5

Jesus said to them, "The children of this age marry and remarry; but those who are deemed worthy to attain to the coming age and to the resurrection of the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage. They can no longer die, for they are like angels; and they are the children of God because they are the ones who will rise. Luke 20:34-36

“He is not the God of the dead, but of the living, for to him all are alive.” The victory over death is the resurrection. The Resurrection belongs to each of us because of Christ. Our spirituality is based on the Resurrection. We would be fools to do what we try to do in the name of Christ if we did not believe in the Resurrection. I examine myself each day to see whether or not I have fled from the Resurrection. The Resurrection is the victory already won. I flee the Resurrection by pessimism. I claim the Resurrection when I step out in faith in the name of Christ. Piety is lived to its fullest when all is done in our lives in the hope of the Resurrection.

I bring Christ into his fullness in my life by living each moment in the hope of being one with Christ. He claims my life by the love of my life for what is right and good. Generosity brings out the best of the Resurrection. Goodness is its expression. Love is how the Resurrection is made real. Love is forever. Where love is in our lives, God is. Because God is love, he resounds through every action of our lives based on love. Acts of love are spontaneous. But the Spontaneous is birthed in every plan we have to do something good for another. We are most alive when we live the Christ life.

Prayer, fasting and good works sharpen the spiritual in our lives. Christ went into the desert for those forty days to prepare for his ministry by prayer and fasting. The good works of Christ are the focus of his life in spreading the Good News which is that God loves us. Christ in his humanness is the strongest statement humanly possible of the love of God for us that is expressed in his Resurrection as a promise of our Resurrection. Christ brings all that he did in his life under the aegis of God’s love for us by his willingness to live his human life for our sakes. All the ways we try to live out in our lives what Christ did for us gives us his blessing on our lives. We become his presence in the world today by the love that gives substance to the good actions of our lives. The hope of the Resurrection makes every sacrifice of our lives worthwhile. Jesus, the firstborn of the dead, is the glory and the power of everything that we would do in the hope of the Resurrection. There is no sacrifice we would make in our love for one another that is not worthwhile. There is no greater love than to give our lives for another. Jesus has loved us as the Father has loved him. We live out his injunction to love when we give our lives for the sake of each other.