Today we celebrate the first day of Ordinary Time. There is certainly nothing ordinary about these thirty-four weeks that reveal in word the fullness of Christ’s life and mission. Saint John Eudes once wrote: It is he himself (Christ) who is to be spirit, heart, love, life, everything for you. In the life of a Christian, all these marvels have their origins in baptism, are increased and strengthened by confirmation and the good use of the other graces in which God makes him share, and are perfected above all in the Eucharist.
The opening verses of today’s gospel remind us of events leading up to the beginning of the public life of Jesus and offer insight into his mission among us … Jesus came to Galilee proclaiming the gospel of God. “…This is the time of fulfillment. The kingdom of God is at hand. Repent and believe in the gospel.” Jesus calls his first disciples to an extraordinary relationship with him …Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men (Mark 1:14-20). They left everything to follow Jesus, leaving behind all that impeded an intimate relationship with him.
It is in response to this teaching and the love offered in the Eucharist that we, too, can listen and hear the whispers of God’s call to perfection. The call to repentance takes on new meaning as new insights into our imperfections grow, and it promotes inner healing. Humble acceptance of limitations grows our humility and promotes greater trust and surrender to God’s loving care.
Father Eymard wrote: We must serve God for love. To serve him for profit is good, but it is not perfection. Our God is a father to us; let us serve him as his children with a devotion that does not reckon the cost, which expects nothing in return but which gives itself to satisfy our hearts need to return love with love.
Let Us Pray:
O God, whose only begotten Son has appeared in our very flesh, grant, we pray, that we may inwardly be transformed through him whom we recognize as outwardly like ourselves. Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever. Amen. (Collect for Feast of Baptism of the Lord)
Daily Eucharistic Reflection – Center for Eucharistic Evangelizing (eucharisticevangelizing.com)
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