More than talk


Someone once said that before marriage it is the man who talks and the woman who listens, that after marriage it is the wife who talks, and the husband who listens, and that in time they both talk and the neighbors listen.

* * *

In today’s Gospel (Lk. 10, 25-37), Jesus teaches us how to attain eternal life, and that is through concrete service, not through talking. Beyond prayers, beyond profession of faith, what matters most in the end is that we did not hurt, but helped, people along the way.

* * *

It has been said: “They say little who love much.” In fact, those who love much need not say much. They just do it. Praise God for people who just do deeds of love without fanfare, without any personal agenda, without thought of fame or reward. Yes, we still have much to learn about love, and about “true love ways.”

* * *

The story of the Good Samaritan invites us to broaden our loving beyond our creed, race, and class. It is easy to love those who are lovable or those who are of “our own kind.” The test of true love is when we love beyond our comfort zones, and to keep on loving anyway, anyhow. Easier said than done? Yes. But it can be done.

* * *

One lesson we need to learn in life is not to pass on the responsibilities of loving to others. Some of us are of the idea that goodness and service are the duty and responsibility of the Church and the government. Instead of complaining and blaming and accusing others, each one of us should take full responsibility to the best of our capacity.

* * *

“Mea culpa.” All of us are guilty of faking blindness or turning a deaf ear to the poor and the needy. And we are very good, too, in rationalizing and justifying our faults, shortcomings, and failures. Today, in humility, let us accept our selfishness and pride, and in humility, make a decision to make reparation and continue on the road of conversion.

* * *

As we journey on, the Lord challenges us to find new ways of loving. Husbands and wives, families, communities, and congregations must not stop at their old, familiar, “time-tested” ways of caring and loving. Remember, nobody loves the way you do. Each one of us is unique, and each one of us loves in a unique way. Nobody loves like you.

* * *

I am reminded of a story about a husband who surprised his wife with an expensive watch. “What made you buy it?” asked the excited wife. “A four-letter word made me do it,” replied the husband. “L-O-V-E?” asked the overjoyed wife. And jokingly the husband said: “No, my dear, S-A-L-E!” Beyond functions, beyond traditions, beyond expectations, we all must continue discovering and rediscovering new ways of serving and loving.

* * *

As in the time of Jesus, so it is in our time: There are robbers. We can defend ourselves from robbers, but how do we defend ourselves from rumormongers and backbiters? We can’t. How do we fight them? We don’t. We just let the Lord defend us and fight for us. Seen on a bulletin board: “Do not worry about things around you. That’s my job.—God”

* * *

I wonder what happened to the robbers who stripped, beat, and left their victim half-dead on the Jericho-Jerusalem road. They must have feasted on their catch for the day, and lived in fear for the rest of their lives.

* * *

In our lowest and defenseless moments, we seek refuge in the loving embrace of our God. When we are in God’s embrace, we are not only comforted but also shielded because He sees the cowards who are stabbing us in the back.

* * *

One beautiful image of the Blessed Mother shows her with her right hand raised to shield and protect, and her left hand embracing and assuring whoever comes to her in need. Let us continue to listen to her saying: “I am here, I am your Mother. Do not fear, I am near.”

* * *

In this year of faith, Fr. James H. Kroeger, MM, shares with us this beautiful poem titled “Faith” (by Karen Taylor): “We struggle to keep up the pace/Sometimes we wonder why/Fear says we’ll never win the race/But faith tells us to try/There’s no one there to comfort us/We’re lost and all alone/Fear drives us far away from God/But faith brings us back home/We need to place our trust in Him, although we cannot see/Our fears can bind us evermore, but faith will set us free/To walk in faith or run in fear… it’s up to us to choose/To walk in faith will win the race, to run in fear will lose.”

* * *

A moment with the Lord:

Lord, remind us that talk matters, but love matters more. Amen.

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Tags: Catholic Church , Fr. Jerry M. Orbos , Gospel , Jesus Christ , Moments , opinion , Religion , SVD , The Good Samaritan

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