Saturday, October 25, 2014

You Shall Love

By Rev. Joe McCloskey, SJ

"You shall not molest or oppress an alien, for you were once aliens yourselves in the land of Egypt.  You shall not wrong any widow or orphan.  If ever you wrong them and they cry out to me, I will surely hear their cry.”   Exodus 22:20-22

"Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?"  He said to him, "You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.”  Matthew 22:36-37

Piety is the expression of our love of God with our entire mind, heart, feelings, strength and whatever else we have.  Piety is making a gift of us to God. It is not just making us beautiful for God; it is also opening up our hearts to all the people, places and things of our lives for his love to become our love for one another.  Piety is the language of the heart that overflows in the good actions of our lives for one another.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.  We study the good people in our lives to see what makes them great lovers.  We quickly discover that it is the way they give themselves without counting the cost.  It is seen in how they labor without seeking rest.  How hard they fight for what is right, just and good is a serious part of the equation of what makes life beautiful to anyone.  We discover by our study how it is possible to love without seeking a reward for what one does.  We quickly learn that it is better to give than to get; to share the essentials of life with those who have nothing.  How precious it is to love without seeing thanks for what we are doing. God created us to have someone to love.  We love and discover God in loving as he does.  Wherever there is love, God is there.

Our godlikeness is reflected in how we love.  Our love of God, self and neighbor is a result of doing all we do out of love.  Love is the ultimate gift of life.  We are invited to love even as Christ has loved us.  The measure of our love will be in the giving of our lives for others.  How our life becomes a reflection of Christ is in all the ways we bring life to others.  Love is what makes our world go round and love is the source of our happiness.  We have God’s life in us when we keep the commandments because the commandments are the putting words on the inner life of God.  Our love becomes God’s love when we are living our lives for others.

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