Homily for 15th Sunday, in Ordinary Time Year B.
Text: Amos 7:12-15; Ephesians 1:3-14; Mark 6:7-13.
Theme: CALLED ACCORDING TO DIVINE PURPOSE
When purpose is not known, abuse is inevitable. Abuse is the product of the absence of knowledge of purpose. As humans, if the purpose for our creation, and existence is not known, abuse is the order of the day. We are not an accident; Our life is not just an event without a plan or direction. Our current situation is not the definition of who we truly are. God is the creator and maker of all things and not a sudden big bang. God created the world out of His irreprehensible will and purpose. Consequently, everything in the world exists for a divine purpose.
We are reminded of our Divine Adoption as God’s children, with its consequences of our call to preach the Good News of Jesus by bearing witness to God’s love, mercy and salvation as revealed through Jesus. We must know, that our witnessing mission will be rejected, as it happened to the Old Testament prophets. God’s choice of us was not a product of chance, but a deliberate one.
In the First Reading (Amos 7:12-15), we read about the distinction between human purpose and divine purpose in the ministry of two men. Amaziah a priest at Bethel, functions by proclaiming the praises of the king (human purpose). Amos, on the other hand, represents an honest response to divine purpose.
In our second reading, St Paul not only reminds us that God chose us in Christ. He equally reminds us of the reason He chose us: “To be holy, and spotless, and to live through love in his presence…. that we should become his adopted sons” This is the remote purpose of God’s choice of each one of us
In the Gospel Reading (Mark 6:7-13), our Lord Jesus Christ gives more clarity to divine purpose in the context of sending the twelve on their first apostolic work. During the commissioning, he asks them not to carry physical provisions except a walking stick and their sandals, because, God will provide for them at all times. (Gen. 22:8).
LESSONS TO LEARN FROM THE SCRIPTURES OF TODAY
- WITNESSING MISSION.
We, have a witnessing mission, we are called to be witnessing disciples and evangelizing apostles. As witnessing disciples, we need to follow, imitate, reflect, and radiate only Jesus. As witnessing apostles, we need to evangelize the world by sharing with others our experience of God and His Son Jesus. In our lives and words, we must radiate the love, mercy, forgiveness, spirit of humble service and concern of Jesus to the people around us.
- LIBERATING MISSION
Our preaching mission, should bring about a liberation from chains and other forms of both physical and spiritual oppressions for those who hear us. Our missions must help free people from the various addictions they suffer. These addictions that have controlled and are controlling the lives of people, making themselves. We need the help of Jesus to liberate both ourselves and others from these things. We are to be walking illustrations of God’s love and providence in action. We are to preach repentance, a change of heart and a change of action taking people from a self-centered life to a God-centered life.
- DIVINE PROVISION FOR DIVINE ASSIGNMENTS
For every divine vision, there is a divine purpose, for every divine purpose, there is a divine assignment, and for every divine assignment, there is a divine provision. In the journey of life, there is the need for us always to remember that God is marching with us and our human provisions could become prohibitions. Hence, the need for us to depend on God. Romans 8:28, says, we know that in all things God works for good with those who love him, those he has called according to His purpose.
The will and purpose of God include His destined love for us through which we gain adoption, redemption, forgiveness of our sins, and riches of His grace which he lavished upon us. However, we are required to respond to God’s purpose by proclaiming His glory and working towards our salvation which is the height of God’s purpose for our lives.
Life without purpose is a disaster. Unfortunately, most people search for their purpose in the wrong places. It is only in God that we can find the full expression of our purpose in life. There is also the need for us to understand that for every purpose there is a process. Sometimes the process might be though, but being steadfast, we will always enjoy the victory of our purpose.
God bless You Immensely.
You shall fulfill Your Purpose.
Fr Paul George Ekanem, C.Ss.R