This is a hard reading. Father against son, mother against daughter. Where did this all come from? From the beginning.
God took a great risk in giving us free will. He knew we might turn against God, and we might turn against each other. But to love God or others, love can only come from our free will. Forcing us to love others is not truly love. We are now in a fallen human state. Our appetites drive us to sin. Our reason tells us what the right and good thing is we should do but our appetite drives us to alcohol, or drugs, or sex or any number of addictions.
Life is hard. God said in Genesis that life will be full of hard work, and we will be faced with many challenges. It was not meant to be that way, but we lost eternal life through the sin of Adam. And so, we struggle.
One of our struggles is believing what we think we are, we are not. Or it is to say, “We are not that important.” Too often you focus only on what you want. Or you think you are right, and everyone is wrong. We become too proud, too conceited.
Another of our struggles, we think we are in control. When we believe everyone is wrong then we promote ourselves to be the person in charge. We give orders. We give direction.
Although this is not a struggle it is a truth. You will die. Those who think they are so important or are in control believe they will never die until they are stricken with some cancer or other illness that promises to take their life soon.
In today’s gospel, Jesus speaks the truth. Jesus could not be silenced. The Jewish leaders, thinking they could silence Jesus by killing him, did not realize truth cannot be silenced. Jesus puts truth into the Church. The Church cannot be silenced.
Today people are trying to silence the Church. When you silence the church, you silence truth.
The truth is marriage is one man and one woman. Abortion is a sin. Homosexuality is sin. Pornography is a sin. Our addictions are sins. Sin is the opposite of charity. We want to substitute things for God. We want wealth, pleasure, power, and honor. All of these suppress the truth in the Church. We see this in our families. Division between father and son, mother and daughter, and so on.
In this world, we often forget God. We focus on wealth, pleasure, power, and honor. These are not sins until we abuse them. When our primary desire is obtaining more money, or we seek only pleasure in our lives, or we want control, and or prestige – honor. When any of these take the place of God, they become grievous sins.
The truth of the Church is found in the way of the cross. Jesus teaches we all must take up our cross and follow him. For his yoke is easy and his burden is light.
May the Lord bless you in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen