Na 2:1, 3; 3:1-3, 6-7
Jesus asks a thought-provoking question in this morning’s gospel reading, ‘What will a man gain if he wins the whole world and ruins his life?’ Jesus is suggesting that we can gain a great deal of what the world has to offer and values, and, yet, lose out at some more fundamental level of our being. We can gain the whole world and, at the same time, lose our life, lose that which makes us truly alive with the life of God. Jesus declares that the opposite is also true. People can lose a great deal of what is highly valued in the world and yet preserve their life, be fully alive with the life of God.
Jesus tells his disciples and all of us in this morning’s gospel reading that it is in following him that we will find this fullness of life. Following the Lord will often mean having to renounce ourselves; in that sense it will mean losing out in the eyes of many. Yet when this is done for the Lord’s sake, out of love for him, out of our desire to be faithful to his values, we will grow into our true selves, the self that is made in the image and likeness of our Creator. The call to renounce ourselves can sound very negative to modern ears. Yet, the Lord’s call is a call to fullness of life. Our self-denial is in the service of that fullness of life which he desires for us all. Amen
Fr. John Peter