Homily for the 30th Sunday of Ordinary Time
“I love you Lord, my strength.” When was the last time we stopped to tell the Lord we love Him? How do we express our love for the Lord?
Think about how we express our love for those individuals in our lives...our spouses, our children, our grandchildren, other close relatives and friends. Many times we use the words, “I love you” to express our affection for them. Yet those words, powerful as they may be, are not always enough. It is important for us to demonstrate our love. What does true love look like? For the answer we turn to our first reading from the Book of Exodus where it says “If you lend money to one of your poor neighbors among my people, you shall not act like an extortioner toward him by demanding interest from him.” Love can be described as a free expression of ourselves offering freely something in which we do not expect something in return. It is not a loan, there is no collecting of interests or any strings attached to it.
As the Lord loved us by laying down His life, He reminds us in today's Gospel that we are called to love. He responds to the Pharisees challenge by saying “You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and the first commandment. The second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. The whole law and the prophets depend on these two commandments.” Indeed it does, everything hinges on love.
All too often we are looking for things in return. If that is the case, stop it! Don't put conditions on love. This week lets challenge ourselves to look for ways we can demonstrate love. Certainly we can always look for more ways we can express our love for those closest to us, but look for ways in which you can demonstrate love for someone else...someone we may not know. It's easier to express love to those closest to us, but the Gospel calls us to branch out. Keep in mind when we demonstrate love for others, we are showing our love to the Lord.