I have chosen two verses from this Sunday’s Gospel for us to think about.
- 1.“…the fully trained disciple will always be like his teacher.”
Our Teacher is Christ and He teaches by example. We can literally say that he SHOWS us the Way. Since He is the Way, we understand that for Him to SHOW us the Way He need only be, He need only live His life, He need only act…
On the other hand, we have here the figure of the “fully trained disciple”. Who is this person? Have you ever met a “fully trained disciple”? Going a bit further: are you a “fully trained disciple”? I assume you will say: “no”. Good answer! But here is where it gets tricky: would you call yourself a disciple of Christ? Do you consider yourself, do you see yourself as a disciple? I hope you will however timidly respond: “yes”. But you might also respond with a silent, perplexed look on your face and I would understand! I believe you know that the word disciple means roughly “apprentice”, or “learner”. In some ways, it takes a lot of pressure off our backs and should somewhat lower, let’s say, unreasonable expectations. It’s like you can only ride a bicycle with training wheels or drive a car only with a learner’s license. That might well be true, but we can also look at it from another perspective and ask: “are you training”? There is no such thing as a good faithful Catholic who is not currently able to enthusiastically identify him or herself as a disciple and whose claim is validated by the choice of a dedicated effort, together with other disciples, to grow in Faith and Love.
Let me put this another way…
2.For a man’s words flow out of what fills his heart.”
This statement reminds us of the good and evil that is commonly found inside our hearts. By speaking to us about our heart Jesus is saying that the value of life also springs from that spiritual place inside each one of us. Are we experiencing a heart that is filled with goodness, translating into good deeds and good words flowing towards others? Is our life so much better because we have Jesus in our midst? Jesus in our midst, in our Church community and in the way in which He has taught us to look at life and appreciate His gifts. Does the Grace of God in our hearts flow out into a life that we can all experience and that we can all share together? Is it real? So, is it true?
Are you actively growing in Faith, Hope and Love? Are you striving to learn the Word of God and to serve others as Jesus commands us to? Growing inside my heart, with my brothers and sisters, while sharing this life with others in a spirit of service: that is what is called a Missionary Disciple. That is what the Holy Spirit wants for you and for us as a Parish Community! Think about it…
Fr Sean Mary