Sunday Mass Readings for the26th Sunday in Ordinary Time
I don’t know about you but I would guess you don’t want to cut off a limb or pluck anything out of your body. I have had problems with one of my toes for years but it is firmly, if not a bit shorter for wear, still part of my body. The part that was no good has been removed and my toe does what a toe is supposed to do.
In the gospel story today Jesus does not literally mean we should cut or pluck. The point is that we must rid ourselves of what is holding us back from living as God intended us to live. You have heard about carrying around extra baggage in our life. If this baggage is holding us back or slowing us down, we must get rid of it. Maybe it is something from our youth that we did or was done to us that was wrong and against God’s law. It negatively affects us many, many years later, and that is just not right. The church does offer a few ways to help unburden ourselves. Among these are confession and Unbound Deliverance and Healing prayer.
Jesus wants us all to act in his name for the glory of God in the same way Moses wanted all the Israelites to prophesy in the Spirit. Doing good works in Jesus’ name can help us get to heaven. It is like sending lumber ahead to heaven so we have a good place to go after leaving life here on earth. The Christian musical artist Eli, in the 1990s, had a song where he likened good deeds done here on earth as sending lumber to heaven in preparation for our future arrival.
Gehenna, where “their worm does not die and the fire is not quenched”, is not where we want to spend all eternity. We were created in God’s image and likeness and He wants us back with Him in heaven when life here on earth is over. We are called to be disciples of Christ to perform mighty deeds in his name. When we do this we cannot at the same time speak ill of him. We are called to bring Jesus to others by our faith in him and by our words and actions.
This week, let us live not lukewarm by performing a mighty deed in Jesus’ name.