YEAR II: HOMILY FOR SATURDAY OF THE 4TH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME
HOMILY THEME: HAVE A REST
BY: Fr. Benny Tuazon
HOMILY: (Mk. 6:30-34) Saturday of the Fourth Week in Ordinary Time
In today’s Gospel Jesus told His apostles to have a rest and take the opportunity to recollect: “ Come away by yourselves to a deserted place and rest a while.” He sent them the message that Christian life is not all work. There is also a time to rest, gather strength and reflect on the events of the day.
Priests and religious had adopted recollections and retreats as constitutive of their lives. No matter how urgent and vital are the calls of the apostolates, they see to it that they had made a time for prayer. Prayer is not a waste of time, It is, in fact very important in order to be focused and in the right direction. Jesus praised Mary over her sister Martha in that scene when Jesus visited Lazarus’ family. Mary deiced to attend to Jesus and listen to Him. Martha elected to get busy in the home. Jesus said told Martha, when she complained,”Mary chose the better part.” Not that work is not important. But listening to what the Lord will say should be the first order of our day.
Jesus knew how tired the apostles had been. He, too, should have been tired and needed some rest from those following Him and asking for healing. Jesus was teaching the apostles the discipline of always communicating with God and silencing and resting oneself. One must be ready both physically and spiritually. The devil attack us on both levels. We must be ready.
Remember that Jesus, before He embarked on His ministry, fasted and prayed for forty days. St. Ignatius developed the Ignition Exercises which is highlighted with a 30-day retreat. Hermits spend most of their time being alone and communing with God. We are also encouraged to have days off, break or recess. Rest is a recognized activity. Our bodies are not machines. Even machines need rest and maintenance. How much more are our bodies? How much more are our souls? Earning and working are great temptations. Jesus, even in the urgency of His mission took time to rest. He commanded His apostles to do the same. We are not exempted from it. Repose is a must for a Christian.