Scripture Readings: Daniel 12:1-3; Hebrews 10:11-18; Mark 13:24-32
As a homilist, I have to say that the Scripture Readings we hear in these last few weeks of the Liturgical Year can be a bit challenging to preach on. They speak of endings. They speak of the end times and for the most part, we infrequently speak of the end times or even our own end time.
Of course, one of the thoughts that was on the mind of many of the early Christians was the imminent Second Coming of Jesus, but as we know, it is some 2000 years later and we and the world are still here.
What happened was Christians began to “refine” there understanding of the coming of God. They began to realize, it may not be tomorrow, or next week, or next year.
The early Christians and people of faith since then, now focus on how the Kingdom of God might begin to be revealed in some way in the world of today. We even pray, as Jesus taught us, “Thy kingdom come on Earth, as it is in Heaven.”
Like the early Christians – we too need to focus in on the presence of Jesus in everyone and in every situation. How is being a Christian, a Disciple of Jesus, a Catholic changing how we live here and now, in the way we live our lives daily.
How can we, in 2015-2016, begin to not only experience, but maybe more importantly share with others, the coming of “the Kingdom of God here on Earth, as it is in Heaven,” to the people we encounter at home, work, school; in our community, and our faith community?
It is interesting, that even our society (knowing or unknowingly) tries to bring something of goodness, of God to people. There is National:
- Hug Someone Day
- Random Acts of Kindness Day
- Honesty Day
- World Laughter Day
- Friendship Day
- Smile Day
- Kindness Day
- Love your Lawyer Day
- National Day of Listening
But, Jesus also offered us some ideas to that might make a bit more real the “Kingdom of God here on Earth, as it is in Heaven:”
- Love One Another – Really Love Others
- Forgive Others – Really Forgive Others
- Feed the Hungry
- Shelter the Homeless
- Visit the Sick… (Really live the Corporal Works of Mercy)
Even Pope Francis is asking the world to observe a Jubilee Year of Mercy, beginning this December… A year when people will become more merciful in their own lives and bring God’s mercy to others.
Yes, the end is near, we know not the day or hour, but in the mean time, maybe the scriptures are suggesting that we do live like today is the final day. Living as people who are as a friend of mine sings in one of his songs, “Blest are we who hear the word of God and keep it.”