Mt 12:46-50 Two Canes and A Will
Someone told Jesus, “Your mother and your brothers are standing outside, asking to speak with you.” But he said in reply, “Who is my mother? Who are my brothers?” And stretching out his hand towards his disciples, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers. Whoever does the will of my heavenly Father is my brother, and sister, and mother.”
I don’t know why I said yes, but I did. It was some time ago when I agreed to do it and I didn’t think much about it. Yesterday I was supposed to go out to The Pines to celebrate Mass and hear confessions. The devil really tempted me not to go; to come up with some clever excuses to get out of it. The trip to The Pines is a very long one, nearly two hours and yesterday I felt exhausted; the day was long; the heat was tremendous. Over and over again, I kept thinking: "If I didn’t go, then I will have my entire evening free!" Believe me, that’s a very nice feeling.
As the hour approached for me to leave, I was putting the finishing touches on one excuse, a lie. I could say, “Guess what…You’ll never believe this…I’m on the road and I got a flat tire! Oh well, I guess you didn’t pray hard enough for me to get out there!!!”
Could I do this?
Right before I got in my car, I called the camp office to double check if everything was still a go for the outdoor Mass; that is, if all the permissions had been granted; if all the red tape had been cleared. Isn’t it amazing how there is no red tape when you don’t want to do something and a ton of red tape when you want to do something?
Well, everything was a go. While I was driving, I kept thinking to myself, “Why do I agree to these things? Why do I agree to drive four hours to celebrate one Mass?” As soon as I arrived, I remembered why. I saw two hundred kids with their big smiles just waiting for the priest to arrive so that he could give them Jesus. I arrived. I delivered. I left.
This morning at St. Monica I celebrated the 8:00 am Mass. I saw all the familiar faces, especially one elderly gentleman who comes to Mass every morning. He struggles to drive. He struggles to get out of his car. He struggles to go up the stairs. He struggles to sit. He struggles to stand. He uses two walking canes. It probably takes him two hours to get to Mass and two hours to get back home. Not because of distance, but because of weakness and pain.
His daily example helped me to overcome my weakness and cowardice.
The Lord is our King and we are his brothers and sisters. His royalty is passed down from one generation to another not by blood, but by faith. The Lord has opened his Kingdom to all, but at a price. We are no longer the chosen people of God. We are a people who must choose God. We are no longer a people of God by race. We are a people of God by creed. We are no longer automatically entitled to an inheritance. We inherit our inheritance by what we say and do.
Mary is not entitled to any special privileges simply because she was related by blood to her Son. She was entitled to special privileges because she was willing to shed her blood for her Son. She did not receive her Son’s Last Will and Testament. She accepted the Will of her Son’s Father and we all received the New Testament. And because she did the Will of the Father, she became the Mother of God.
Following God’s Will will make us special, very special, a son and daughter of God. Following the examples of our holy brothers and sisters, will make us One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church.