HEARING AND OBSERVING GOD’ WORD

Saturday, 27th Week in Ordinary Time          

            “Blessed are those who hear the word of God and observe it.”

            In today’s gospel reading, the woman’s comment draws attention to Jesus’ mother, suggesting why she is blessed. Jesus transforms the remark into another opportunity to declare where real blessing in life resides: “Blessed are those who hear the word of God and observe it.” In effect, Jesus is saying that blessing is not a matter of biological or social origin, but relating well to God.

            At times Catholics may so alienate Mary from the real world that it becomes impossible to emulate her in their lives. This passage does much to anchor Mary in this real world. Mary is Luke’s model disciple. Mary is the most blessed because she was the best in hearing the word of God and observing it.

            This simple but challenging formula of hearing and observing (or obeying) God’s word becomes the standard for Christ’s disciples. It invites us all to be blessed as Mary by doing exactly that: hearing and observing God’s word in our daily life. It is about hearing the word of God about loving our neighbor and observing it by showing practical charity to the hungry, the homeless, the jobless. It is about hearing the word of God about faith and observing it by letting go and letting God be God in all the circumstances of our life. It is about hearing the word of God about trust and observing it by living with full confidence in God’s goodness and providence. It is about hearing the word of God about prayer and observing it by spending regular time to commune and be intimate with the Lord. It is about hearing the word of God about peace and observing it by fixing our minds on him, being aware of his presence in our life It is about hearing the word of God about service and observing it by getting personally involved in any parish ministry or pastoral work. It is about hearing the word of God about forgiveness and observing it by pardoning without limit those who have hurt and offended us.

            Let us ask the help and prayer of Mary. Let us imitate Mary’s discipleship – that like her we may be blessed. “Blessed are those who hear the word of God and observe it.”

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