January 20, 2013 – Second Sunday in Ordinary Time

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It’s called the “Good News” for a reason. Life is difficult in every age and generation. Just ask anyone you know and they’ll have a story or two. In the first reading of Isaiah, the people of God are getting a huge word of encouragement during a devastating and depressing moment of their lives. Being conquered and exiled, and altogether having your life smashed to smithereens, it would be easy to give up on life. Isaiah speaks for God, and essentially says, “I know you’ve had a tough time and have felt like you were forgotten, but I’m here for you. You can count on Me, because you are my beloved people. Hang in there. Joy is coming!” In essence, TRUST GOD’S LOVE. The psalm echoes a similar sentiment, “GOD IS GOD. RELY ON GOD’S LOVE.” The second reading conveys that the Holy Spirit is the giver of gifts, and through these gifts that are shared by you and me, God loves, heals and transforms the world. Everyone has a gift and everyone is a gift. A song I wrote contains the lyric: “Gracious God, mercy is your name. Redeeming love, you give your life away. Gracious God, we bless your holy name. Receiving love, we give our lives away.” Love is God’s vocation, and so it is ours, too. The gospel reading solidifies the point. Mary tells her son that the wine is running low and the party’s about to take a turn for the worst. Jesus replies, “Mom, this isn’t my problem.” Mary simply says to the servants, “This is my son. Do what He tells you to do.” Jesus’ mom has huge influence on her son, and SHE steps up even though her son doesn’t think it’s time. It’s a powerful story about how a parent believes so much in their child, that sometimes the child needs a loving nudge. What seems like a hassle turns out to be a holy moment that saves the day! That’s God’s way, friends. Life is difficult, but love always finds a way. The challenge for all of us is to REALLY trust God’s love and care, while at the same time BE God’s loving care for others.

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