Devotional thoughts for All Souls Sunday - 30th Jan 2005.
- Reading: From the Gospel according to St. Luke 12: 32-48.
Dear and Respected Brethren,
As we all know we are in the preparation to enter the great Lent. Last
Sunday we have remembered all the departed clergy, prayed for them and
sought their intercession and their continued care and protection. Today we
are honoring all our departed souls, and are praying for their peace and
happiness and at the same time we are seeking their support and help.
In Verse 32 of today�s lesson, we read, �Fear not, little flock; for it is
your father�s good pleasure to give you the kingdom�. Our Lord calls the
faithful little flock, not because of the size of membership, but because of
their growth. The faithful of those days were considered as babes. See St.
Matthew 11:25 �At that time Jesus answered and said, I thank thee, O Father,
Lord of Heaven and earth, because thou has hid these things from the wise an
prudent, and has revealed to babes�. In Psalms 8:2 we read, �out of the
mouth of babes and sucklings you have ordained strength�� In I Corinthians
1:27 we read, �God has chosen the foolish things of the world to confound
the wise; and God has chosen the weak things of the world to confound the
things which are mighty�. Kindly read and meditate 1 Corinthians 2:7-8, 2
In Verse 33 our Lord is emphasizing the need for doing alms. If we do so we
could have savings in heaven. Unless and until we make savings in heaven, we
could not inherit heaven. In verse 34 we read, �For where your treasure is,
there will be your heart also� We all are very familiar with alms giving. In
our private lives as well as the church lives we are giving priority for
Alms giving or the so-called charity. The basic principle of charity is that
it must start from home. In the individual as well as the church sectors, we
popularize charity and care to give top priority. But usually we are
interested in giving for popularity. Our Lord has forbidden publishing our
donations saying that what the right hand is doing should not be known to
the left hand. Due to the advent of medias especially visual medias, we all
are interested in giving alms for publicity sake. When disasters affect the
masses the parishes and Churches are competing each other for more and more
popularity. Recently when the Tsunami hit the Asian beaches, especially in
Kerala, all Churches came forward with the relief works. All are interested
in gaining publicity than the other. No one is interested to do something in
a disciplined way. It will be good if each parish/Church would try to do
whatever possible than the other parish/church, could be welcomed. We are
selfish and selfishness guides all our activities. God will not be pleased,
if our doings are selfish motivated. Instead of doing something for
publicity sake, all parishes and Churches must turn their attention to care
and extend the helping hand to the poor, needy and downtrodden in the
parishes/Dioceses/Churches first. If we do not care our suffering brethren,
we cannot escape from the questioning of our Lord God.
Here in the verses 35 onwards our Lord is trying to teach us that doing
something for the poor and needy will be a saving in heaven and it is
entirely the will of God. We all might claim that we are doing the will of
God. We must be regular Churchgoers and members of the different spiritual
organizations. But these qualities wont make us worthy to claim that we are
doing the will of God.. We must replace our vague understanding about the
will of God and fill our minds with the understanding that the will of God
means love to God and love to brethren. If we love our brethren, we will
care them and will render all possible helps to the genuinely needy. All of
us must check ourselves. Examine whether we love God and our fellow men, as
God wants and wishes. If not rectify our life style immediately. We must
repent for the past wrong deeds. In verse 50 we hear the exhortation to be
ready to receive our Lord, when He would come. We are not sure of the time
and hence we are asked to wait. In verse 42 we listen to the promise of a
position to the wise faithful. One who does the will of God is the wise
faithful. Verse 43 describes such a faithful as the blessed.
Let us pray earnestly to make us worthy to be called wise and faithful. May
God be pleased in our spiritual lives and grant us more and more blessings
to do His will.
May God bless us all.
Jose Kurian Puliyeril
St. George Orthodox Church
Member ID # 0905