FIFTH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME FEBRUARY 9, 2020
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew 5:13-16
Jesus said to his disciples: “You are the salt of the earth. But if salt loses its taste, with what can it be seasoned? It is no longer good for anything but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot. You are the light of the world. A city set on a mountain cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and then put it under a bushel basket; it is set on a lampstand, where it gives light to all in the house. Just so, your light must shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your heavenly Father.”
REFLECTION: “You are the salt of the earth."
Growing up I remember the pillars of society--the salt of the earth--in our community. These were men and women who stood out from the world by giving, doing, and saying exceptional things. Most had contributed via the Rotary Club, or performed philanthropic work or were docents of the George and Martha Washington Society. They were well respected and someone you could imitate. They gave distinction and improved "taste" to their deeds. They were the "salt" of society.
When Jesus tells us to be the "salt of the earth", we are to be a person who can bring God to others via our works, words and conformity to His will.
Words and works have memories. Courage and conviction bring to mind war heroes, martyrs and priests. Too frequently we read about a priest who was shot, bludgeoned with a machete, or even beheaded. Even slandered!!
The message preached during their lifetime resonates years after they are transferred or even after their death. They are the salt of God's kingdom.
Our Good Shepherds state truth and goodness. They don't compromise with lies and wrongdoing. Does our love for God compel us to tell the truth, no matter the consequences? Do we want to imitate the priests?
Sometimes we prefer to blend into the background of blandness, mediocrity and underachievement. But who will alert us of dangers or of all God has done and can do for us? Remember, God's grace enables us to fight fear with faith. May we step up and say, as the priest, "Here I am, Lord".
Trust in the Lord. He will defend Himself.