Sunday 31 May 2015

1st Sunday of Lent Year C

Most of us know that the ways of the world and the ways of God are different. For example, what the world sees as success is different from what God sees as success. According to the world, a person is successful if one has tremendous amounts of money, property and wealth, as well as power and popularity. People in the world would generally hardly take notice of you if you are poor, weak or unpopular, since in their mind, you would not have anything to offer them or you are of no use or advantage to them.

In today's Gospel, we see the contrast between the ways of the world and the ways of God. Jesus was tempted by the devil to succumb to possessions, power and popularity, all of which are worldly matters. The devil tried to tempt Jesus to change the stones into bread, which is the temptation to place ones trust in riches, possessions and objects, as if such things are all that matters in our lives. The devil tried to tempt Jesus with power, by giving the impression and illusion that if we are in control of our lives, control of organisations, or control of other people; basically if we are in control generally, then we would be somebody important. The devil also tried to tempt Jesus with popularity, by doing things or performing feats which would attract the crowd and make one seem famous. But as we would later note, Jesus did perform miracles but never to show off or to make himself popular.

Such temptations are certainly challenging to overcome, but Jesus rejected all these temptations because none of them could take away the fact that He is the Son of God. Jesus is showing us that God loves us no matter who or what we are. We do not need to prove our importance by acquiring riches, power and popularity. Being God's sons and daughters is all that we would ever want and need. In the first reading, Moses reminded the Israelites of their history and their identity. They were 'nobodies' or 'slaves.' But God gave them an identity by saving them, giving them a land which they could call home and made them His people. Without God they had no identity, no freedom, no riches, no importance. Only with God did they and us too become sombodies. Only with God would we find happiness and contentment.

Thus, if we are still caught up with the ways of the world, let us pray that we would learn to let go and let God be in control. Let us pray for God's grace to resist all forms of temptations, knowing that they can never grant us eternal happiness. What matters is we find happiness and everlasting life in our loving God.

No comments:

Post a Comment