YEAR B: HOMILY FOR TUESDAY OF THE ELEVENTH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME
HOMILY THEME: CAMOUFLAGED LOVE
BY: Rev Fr Joseph Nyarko Asare
(1 Kgs 21:17-29/Ps 51/Mt 5:43-48)
Jesus invites us to love both neighbour and the enemy. Unfortunately, our words express love but our actions indicate complete hatred for our family, friends and neighbours. All in the name of love, we are leading those we cherish most to hell. For the sake of our reflection, I choose to define love as, “An act of seeking the best for someone”.
There is no object, situation or an event bigger, valuable and more precious than eternal love. To love, therefore, means to help the other to obtain eternal salvation. This may mean speaking the truth that is uncomfortable, denying a pleasure that is demanded, giving a scorn that is unwelcomed, and presenting a guidance that is not solicited.
Genuine love of this nature may cause pain, bitterness, separation, enmity, and persecution from those we love. Ahab sees Elijah as an enemy simply because the latter loved Israel and the king. Approving the emotional happiness of an individual in itself is not love until it can benefit the one to eternal joys. Elijah denies emotional and psychological comfort to Ahab for the sake of love; unfortunately, the king sees that as hatred.
As Christians, let us learn to be like Jesus who is not afraid to lose reputation, immediate approval or applause for the sake of love. He prefers to lose a friend if that will save the soul of that friend. We commit many sins to convenience others and prevent them from getting offended. Let us, humbly and frankly, ask ourselves, “Are my loving deeds leading my cherished ones to heaven?” If the answer is no, then my love is fake, false and damaging. Indeed, such is not love but hatred camouflaged as love.
~For the courage to love in sincerity ~That we will appreciate those who deny our lust to seek our salvation ~For genuine and authentic understanding of God's love
(Rev Fr Joseph Nyarko Asare of the Catholic Diocese of Obuasi)