WEDNESDAY: Twenty-third Week in Ordinary Time
Growing in the Spirit of the Beatitudes
The secret of authentic human happiness lies deep in the heart of Christ. He longs to draw us into the recesses of his heart only to transform us into the image of himself (Matt.23:37). He yearns for us to be heirs with him to the eternal treasures of the kingdom. Christ is the Way, the Truth and the Light. Only in him and through him we will discover the way to the eternal treasure God has in mind for us. Only through him, will we know the truth and see the light of God’s glory shining on us and in us.
St. Luke’s version of the Beatitude reassures us that genuine Christian growth and spirituality is impossible without the total embodiment of the virtues, values and valour of God and Christ. The Beatitudes, in other words, are indispensable divine moral codes. They shape the consciousness of the adherents of Christ and challenge them to adopt a particular discipline that is contrary to what the world is offering. In fact, the Beatitudes, with a sense of gentle mastery, dare to rise above persecution complex, disregard the demands of physical hunger, nakedness, assaults and intimidation mindful that the power of God’s love will suffice for and secure our victory
In fact, the Beatitudes reminds us that discipline, integrity, spirituality, perfection and holiness beg for conscientious surrender to divine discipline and a readiness to reject earthly standards, the lure of materialism or all subhuman conditions to be absolutely faithful to God and to yearn for the kingdom as our decisive treasure.
St. Paul in Colossians 3:1-11 understands that the Beatitudes shape the whole process of Christian transformation as a voluntary death with Christ. It is a deliberate effort on our part to kill everything in us that belongs only to earthly life. That for St. Paul is the type of effort we must put into becoming integral parts of the divine life with Christ. Paul goes thus far to think sometime, it may require us losing our cultural and ethnic identities to assume a common identity with Christ. Paul in his letter to Galatians 2:20 speaks of the death of our ego in graphic terms. He speaks of it as a crucifixion with Christ. Only when he willfully nailed his ego to the cross, Paul understood what it meant to live entirely in Christ. That is the consummate meaning of the Beatitudes. We endure all forms of redemptive suffering with humility and obedience only to inherit the kingdom of heaven.
O God, you are the treasure that I seek. In humility and obedience, I surrender to your will that I may grow in the spirit of the Beatitudes