There is a beautiful verse in the first reading for Mass today, from the book of Job. He is talking about how mighty and powerful God is, and his descriptions of God are almost like poetry: “He commands the sun, and it rises not; he seals up the stars. He alone stretches out the heavens and treads upon the crests of the sea.”
The first reading for Mass today begins with the words, “Job opened his mouth and cursed his day,” and the negative feelings and emotions continue through the rest of the first reading, the responsorial psalm and the gospel today as well. What should we do? Nobody wants to think about negative, unhappy things …
Today is the feast of the Archangels, Saint Michael, Saint Gabriel and Saint Raphael. It is unusual that the readings today do not mention any of these three Archangels.
What is really amazing about the gospel today, is that Jesus wasn’t judgmental at all about some of the most frowned upon sinners of his time. In fact, he stood up for them right in front of the Pharisees. What an awesome advocate we have in Jesus. He isn’t concerned about the past, but he is concerned about the present.
At the end of the first reading from the book of Ecclesiastes is a verse that sums up both of the readings for Mass: “The dust returns to the earth as it once was, and the life breath returns to God who gave it.” The entire reading from the book of Ecclesiastes today, is beautiful, but it is also a forewarning of things to come.
“There is an appointed time for everything, and a time for every affair under the heavens. A time to be born, and a time to die, a time to plant, and a time to uproot the plant. A time to kill, and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build. A time to weep, and a time to laugh, a time to mourn, and a time to dance.”
“No one who lights a lamp conceals it with a vessel or sets it under a bed; rather, he places it on a lampstand so that those who enter may see the light. For there is nothing hidden that will not become visible and nothing secret that will not be known and come to light.”
“Seek the Lord while he may be found, call him while he is near.” This is some very good advise and also a reminder that our earthly lives will not go on forever. It seems like so much of the time we are caught up in the present moment …