Please remember to mark your calendar and join us for a “Welcome Back” Mass and reception on Sunday, September 12th, beginning with Mass in the church at 10:30 am and then moving to the gym for fellowship and a delicious meal.
Life is a “both-and.” Paul gives a very clear example in our reading from Ephesians: we BOTH have to avoid certain things AND we have to do certain things. Not just avoid sinful behavior but also embrace good behavior. BOTH-AND!
What do we need to avoid? All bitterness, fury, anger, shouting, and reviling must be removed from you, along with all malice. Notice the verb “removed.” These feelings will come: they are part of being a human being. But we can’t buy in to them, allow them to rule us.
What do we need to embrace instead? Be kind to one another, compassionate, forgiving one another as God has forgiven you in Christ. Notice the emphasis here: it is on the other person. When we act out of anger or bitterness, we are focused on ourselves. When we can be kind to another, especially when they don’t deserve it, when we can be compassionate and forgiving, we are focused on the other.
The irony is that, when we can think of the other person and not just ourselves, we are more at peace. When I am angry and railing against someone or acting out against them, I am not happy. When I can forgive and let go, I am at peace. It is an example of Jesus’ saying, “the one who loses his life will find it.”
I invite us to reflect on this paradox, asking God to help us “let go” if we are clinging to any bitterness, resentment, or anger. God bless.
Church sign of the week: I trust the next chapter because I know the author.