Sunday, January 8, 2017

How to Be You

What makes a person loveable and pleasing for their parents or to anyone? What does it entail to be chosen? How to be You?

To help us contemplate today’s Feast of the Baptism of the Lord, let us look at the three main characteristics of a chosen one, of person pleasing to the Lord: PEACEMAKER, JUST AND OBEDIENT.

PEACEMAKER. Our first reading tells us that the person who pleases the Lord is the one who brings peace and love peace for the Spirit of the Lord is with him. He does not shout or raise the tone, makes its voice heard in the street, does not break a bruised reed, not quench one dimly burning wick, and proclaims the right with truth.

Jesus, the chosen one, brought and continues to bring peace to all those who are troubled at heart. He brought back the broken relationship between man and God.

Isn’t it that we love people who are peaceful, who gives us peace of mind, people whom when we see them we find relief and brings us joy? As followers of Jesus, as baptized Christians, let is always remember that we are also called to be peacemakers and bring peace to our family and community than be source of tragedy and war. By being peacemaker, we would be loveable and pleasing to the eyes of men, but also to God.

JUST. The second characteristic that pleases the Father is to have fear in the Lord and be just. Our second reading says that Saint Peter realized that God does not have a preference in choosing a person that will serve him. He chooses whoever he wants from whatever nation or race. He chooses those who have fear or respect in the Lord and who are just.

Jesus, the chosen one, had a great respect to his Father and was just in all his ways, in all his actions, in all his deeds. He did not just bring peace, he also brought justice to all nation.

As baptized Christians, we are also called to have respect and fear of the Lord. We are called to have respect in our parents and have that sense of fear in them and all our actions are in the right place. We are invited to be just in all our deeds and actions.

OBEDIENT. The third characteristic of a person pleasing to the Lord is obedient. He is obedient to the laws and statutes. Which in turn, brings forth peace and justice to all.

Our Gospel tells us that when Jesus came to be baptized by John in the river Jordan, John would not have wanted to do it because he felt not worthy and even said that it is him whom Jesus must baptize. But Jesus said: “Let it be so now; for it is proper for us in this way to fulfill all righteousness.” Jesus showed that he had come not to break the laws but rather to fulfil it.

My dear friends, as baptized Christians, we are also called to be obedient persons. Obedient to the law is to be just and bring peace. We are called to follow the precepts of the Lord, to follow the law of love and compassion.

In today’s Feast of the Baptism of the Lord, as we renew later our baptismal promise, I would like to invite all of you to recall your lives as Christians. In your life as a Christian for 13 years, 20, 30, 40, 60, or 90, have you ever been a peacemaker or you have been always the cause of troubles? Do you fear the Lord or you fear no one, not even God and so you don’t care to be just in your ways and deeds? Were you obedient to the precepts of the Lord in living as Christians?

Let us be PEACEMAKERS, JUST and OBEDIENT so that God our Father may also be pleased with us.

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