Dear Fathers, Friends in Christ,
Psalm 122:1-2, 3-4ab, 4cd-5
Today's gospel readings are two separate topics. Initially they might seem unrelated, since the topics are about the "Call to Repentance" and "The Parable of the Fig tree." However, when you think about it, both serve as a reminder that we have personal responsibilities regarding our everyday lives and their impact on us for all eternity.
In the first parable Christ reminded His followers that they are to repent so as not to perish. (see Luke 13:5) With advances in technology, we are constantly bombarded with stories about the tragedies and deaths throughout the world. Our natural tendency, when we see so much of it, is to separate ourselves from it psychologically and think, "Not me, not today." One has to wonder how prepared all those people are to face their Creator.
Likewise the parable of the Barren Fig Tree serves as a reminder for us about how we are using the gifts and talents that God has given to us. In elementary and secondary school, teachers work hard to help students identify and develop their talents, such as in music, art, writing, public speaking, and/or sports. What happens with these talents as the years pass by?
I recently learned of a small community that started a senior citizen band. Fifteen or twenty seniors dusted off their old instruments, met fairly often to regain their proficiency, and now perform frequently around a broad area. They serve as a living sign of love, hope and beauty.
We have the gift of free will and are stewards of our embodied souls. It is our choice how we are to proceed in life. Today's gospel reading can help us to think about how well we are succeeding.
Father Ed Bakker
Anglican Catholic Church / Original Province
Mission of Saint Aidan of Lindisfarne