Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time [A] February 19, 2017

In today’s Gospel, Jesus makes known that following Him involves a charity that goes far beyond worldly expectations (Matthew 5:38-48).

When something is difficult and upsetting, the natural reaction is to strike back and retaliate. However, Jesus expects an elevated response to challenges, including when someone is cruel and unfair. .

According to Our Blessed Lord, genuine disciples look for ways to help others, not tear them down. Oftentimes care and kindness consist in little details such as a simple smile, a word of encouragement, an expression of thanks and a thoughtful gesture.

Humility and kindness always please God. The Christian way never is one of vengeance. Rather, it always seeks what is right and good, including when such choices do not bring forth any material gain or good fortune.

Being humble and kind makes us more understanding, more ready to forgive and more fit to live alongside everyone.

Ask God to inspire you to extend sincere friendship to a wider circle of people. Ask God to inspire greater care for everyone you know and meet. Ask God to help set aside personal ego for expressed benefit of others – especially those in need and those who are difficult. Intentional disciples earnestly seek to understand our friends even though we may never come to share or accept what they hold when its irreconcilable with our Christian beliefs.