Saint for the day: John Paul II (May 18, 1920 – April 2, 2005)
Isaiah 45:1, 4-6 – Psalm 96 – Thessalonians 1:2-5-b – Matthew 22:15-21
“Shine like lights in the world as you hold on to the word of life.” (Today’s ‘Alleluia verse leading us to hearing today’s Holy Gospel)
“God has called me even though I wasn’t aware of His presence.” In the Gospel Jesus is being set up by the S & Ps over the Temple Tax: “Give to Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s!”
By virtue of our Baptism we are citizens of Heaven, our true home, and marked and named by God. Therefore we owe all our allegiance to this God who formed us and named us as His own. “Before you came into being I knew you through and through. I have carved you on the palm of my hand.”
With all these references we are hard pressed to fail to realize what is our purpose in life. As St. Augustine says, “our hearts are restless until they rest in thee.” So, we take the bottom line: we belong to God and God belongs to us. Therefore, we are citizens of another era/world. Yet, while we pass through this time, we keep in mind where we are going. Given all the clues to what life/death is all about for the believer, we should find it easy to stay on the path that leads us to our true home, heaven. Yet, it is no secret that we wander in and out of favor with this God who has marked us and named us as His own. Still, we know that God will always call us back. We just have to have the courage and faith to accept this call to forgiveness. We are citizens of Heaven, our true home, and we need to live our lives here on earth with that in mind. How stupid it would be for us, who know so much about the “promises,” to not accept God’s forgiveness?
Let this be our prayer for today: “Lord, I know you love me and call me to yourself even though you know me through and through. Help me to see your gentle hand lifting me up from the mud of my life and into your wonderful hands. Amen!