FIFTEENTH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME
Also Read: Mass Readings for 11 July 2021
First Reading: Amos 7: 12-15
Face your Amaziahs!
Amaziah, the priest of Bethel tells Amos to flee from there and not prophesy against Israel! But Amos responds with the command God gave him – “Go prophecy to my people.” (v.15)
Therefore, even when we are met with strong opposition and sometimes even from highly placed persons; we must remind them and ourselves about God’s command to us! We must not be bogged down by the negativity and accept it! But rather, we must keep reminding ourselves first and remain resolute in our ways.
So, prophecy, we must and when needed use words!
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 85: 9-14
Hearing means Turning!
“Let me hear what God the Lord will speak, for he will speak peace to his people, to his faithful to those who turn to him in their hearts.”
“Righteousness will go before him and will make a path for his steps.”
When we listen to God’s voice and turn to him in our hearts; He makes a path for us!
Second Reading: Ephesians 1: 3-14
“We -The Co-heirs!”
“In him you also, when you had heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation and had believed in him, were marked with the seal of the promised Holy Spirit; this is the pledge of our inheritance toward redemption as God’s own people, to the praise of His glory.” (v14)
St. Paul is encouraging us here today, as the ones who have heard our Gospel of Salvation and Believed! We have received the Holy Spirit through our baptism and confirmed at our Confirmation! God himself has pledged our redemption and we are the adopted children of God through Jesus Christ!
We have “the forgiveness of our trespasses” (v7) in the passion, death, and resurrection of Jesus. “He has made known to us the mystery of his will” (v9) through the power of the Holy Spirit dwelling within us. We receive Christ, the Word of God, into our very being; every time we receive the Holy Eucharist!
“As a plan for the fullness of time, to gather up all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth.” (v10) We know we are currently living in the last days and when we ‘hear’ these words of truth; we are strengthened in our walk! – Because we heard, we believed and we kept to ‘the way’ in steadfastness! Amen!
Gospel: Mark 6: 7-13
Power and Finance Management!
What did Christ allow his chosen, to carry and what were his commands? -Staff, Sandals, and One tunic! -Easy to travel, no baggage therefore no attachments! Staff- Word of God, Sandals – Holy Spirit to protect and to guide their steps! One Tunic- to wear what they had- no more, no less! Putting on the whole armor of God (Eph 6:1-13) and wearing it with pride and reverence! When we work out of pride and reverence for God, we are successful; just as the apostles! They had to depend on God completely for all their basic needs – food, money, and shelter!
“Wherever you enter a house, stay there until you leave the place!” (v10) – Decision making, choices, and commitment! If we decide (under the guidance of the Holy Spirit) on a certain shelter for our stay – we must remain there until we decide to leave the town!! That means when the house dwellers are welcoming; we will know how long deems fit to reside in that town! That house dweller/owner will be the sample of the town’s welcome!
Therefore then, the converse also holds true for the above! So we must quickly “shake off the dust” (of negativity and reproach against us) and leave that town! -“If they refuse to hear you” (v11) We are bound to gather dust on our feet – bondages/ weaknesses to hold us back/down! When we shake the sandals (Our Power of the Holy Spirit within, is activated) as a “testimony”- God is our witness. We bear testimony than to our faith as well as to the power of God within us! Hence, we are well within our rights and possess the authority, to reject the “dust” thrown at us! Do not delay the good work of the Lord!
The question now remains, where have we entered? Have we made some choices/ decisions, that may be holding us captive?