They had failed to honor God. But how about us today? Do we honor God as we promised at our baptism? What does honoring God mean today in a world filled with turmoil, hate, nationalism, divisions, partisanship, polarization, discrimination, death, and untold suffering? How do we confront the immense hate, misinformation, and disinformation coming at us from all fronts?
The Psalmist offers us an answer, “In you, Lord, I have found my peace.” We have received God’s word. This “word is at work in all who believe.” How are you and I proclaiming this word? Are we like the scribes and Pharisees that Jesus refers to in the gospel today? “Therefore, do and observe everything they tell you, but do not follow their example. For they preach, but they do not practice.”
Living our Christian calling today demands that we live what we preach. We proclaim that we are followers of Christ. What would Christ do with the unspeakable violence happening in Palestine, Israel, Ukraine, Yemen, Sudan, Somalia? What would Jesus do with the violence that is unfolding in the Holy Land? Would Jesus be silent, indifferent, or partisan in his response? No. Jesus would speak truth to power and demand an end to hate and violence.
Today, Jesus tells us that we are all brothers and sisters, and those greatest must be servants of all. He calls us to be humble. He demonstrated to us what this humility means by assuming our human form, transforming and reconciling us with God. Christian humility must seek to liberate the oppressed, heal wounds of violence and hatred, and bring hope, reconciliation, justice, peace, and equality for all, regardless of race, status, or religion. In this way we honor God.
Maryknoll Sister Susan Nchubiri, from Kenya, joined Maryknoll in 2004. She has served in Hong Kong, China and Haiti. In 2016 she was assigned to work in the IT department at the Maryknoll Sisters center in New York.
Featured image: Maryknoll Sister Susan Nchubiri talks about intercultural living at the Providence Rest Nursing Home and Rehabilitation Center in New York, N.Y.