Commentary on the Gospel of
Judgment is a major theme of the two readings and the Psalms. What struck me was the tone had a more hopeful nature than I anticipated on the subject of the readings. The first reading from Thessalonians gives a warning about the second coming. We are told not to be concerned about any “spirit”, an “oral statement” or a “letter” on this future event. The advice to us from Paul is to “stand firm” in what we are doing. This gives comfort knowing that if we are strong in our faith and continue in our actions we should be encouraged through the grace of God.
The psalms continue this theme. God is portrayed as the Lord of all who reigns justly and with equity. I know from this he is a just and loving God. The gospel reading from Matthew has a more foreboding tone but offers contentment as well. There is a warning not to be hypocritical like the Pharisees. The message is to be concerned about our interior self and not be ruled by the external. For myself I find that this speaks to my heart.
So often I get carried away by the externals of the secular world and even at times become too rigid in the practice of my faith. I need to be reminded that my interior spiritual life is most important. This certainly includes a solid spiritual life grounded in faith. It also includes perhaps following the example of Pope Francis and turning my attention more to my fellow man in need. As I go forward in my spiritual journey, the challenge is to find the balance between both of these approaches to spirituality. I hope as Paul states “through grace” my heart will be strengthened.