Friday, 9th Week in Ordinary Time
“The great crowd heard this with delight.”
How come people in today’s gospel listened to Jesus with delight? To find that out we might check our own experience. Do you remember a time when someone came up to you and told you: “You are great!” and because you felt that the speaker really meant it, you heard it with delight? Do you remember a time when you told someone that same thing, “You are great!” and because you said it with sincerity, suddenly his or her face lit up with sheer delight?
Let us go back to our first question: How come people listened to Jesus with delight? Because every time Jesus speaks to people, he makes them feel their greatness. He makes them realize the goodness of their person. He makes them see the beauty of their being. He does not talk down to them or belittle them. He does not rub their noses in their sinfulness or weaknesses. He does not speak about God’s rejection and annoyance of them. He does not only tell people, he makes them experience that God loves them unconditionally.
And because of this, those who are discouraged and disheartened, find new hope and they are inspired to go on. Those who have low self-image are made to realize of their dignity as God’s beloved children. Those who are confused are enlightened and are led to make the right decision. Those who are lonely, abandoned, and rejected find a friend and companion in him. Those who experience some form of slavery hear a reassuring message of liberation. Every time Jesus speaks, he speaks of Good News – about God’s kingdom, God’s concern and love – that is why people listen to him with delight.
As Christ’s followers, we must strive that every time we speak to people, we proclaim and make tangible God’s tender loving care for them. Let us speak words of affirmation and appreciation. Let us express our sincere gratitude for their giftedness. Let us communicate with them with warmth and interest. Let us convey to them the God’s unconditional love for them. Let us impart inspiring and motivating stories. By this, we make them feel the good news in its purest form. We make them listen with delight.