This is our final Sunday before Lent and we have our fifth installment from Jesus' Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5-7)
. The readings this Sunday focus on total dependence on God, not ourselves.
In our first reading (Isaiah 49:14-15)
, we hear a concise yet wonderfully consoling message that God's love for us far surpasses that of a mother for her infant. Nothing we could ever do would merit such love. It comes to us freely as a gift from God simply because God loves us that much.
Zion said, "The LORD has forsaken me; my LORD has forgotten me." Can a mother forget her infant, be without tenderness for the child of her womb? Even should she forget, I will never forget you.
In our Gospel reading (Matthew 6:24-34)
we hear Jesus' teaching on complete dependence and trust in God, without anxiety, fear or worry about tomorrow.
Jesus said to his disciples: "No one can serve two masters. He will either hate one and love the other, or be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon. "Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink, or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds in the sky; they do not sow or reap, they gather nothing into barns, yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are not you more important than they? Can any of you by worrying add a single moment to your life-span? Why are you anxious about clothes? Learn from the way the wild flowers grow. They do not work or spin. But I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was clothed like one of them. If God so clothes the grass of the field, which grows today and is thrown into the oven tomorrow, will he not much more provide for you, O you of little faith?
So do not worry and say, 'What are we to eat?' or 'What are we to drink?' or 'What are we to wear?' All these things the pagans seek. Your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be given you besides. Do not worry about tomorrow; tomorrow will take care of itself. Sufficient for a day is its own evil."
In our Epistle reading, (1 Corinthians 4:1-5)
. Paul teaches us that we are servants of Christ and we are not to worry about how or if others will judge us. It is the Lord alone who will judge us, when he comes.
Brothers and sisters: Thus should one regard us: as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God. Now it is of course required of stewards that they be found trustworthy. It does not concern me in the least that I be judged by you or any human tribunal; I do not even pass judgment on myself; I am not conscious of anything against me, but I do not thereby stand acquitted; the one who judges me is the Lord. Therefore do not make any judgment before the appointed time, until the Lord comes, for he will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will manifest the motives of our hearts, and then everyone will receive praise from God.
Sometimes, when we worry and fret about our tribulations in life, it is like an act of pride because we tend to rely on our own devices instead of God. Total trust and abandonment to God is what Jesus may have had in mind when he said at the beginning of his Sermon on the Mount, "Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven."
Don't worry, Be happy!Click Here
for the full scripture readings for Sunday, February 26, 2017