Sunday, February 13, 2011

Law and Love

"Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets. I have come not to abolish but to fulfill." - Matthew 5:17
At first glance, today's reading seems so legalistic. All about law and sin and judgment. We cannot possibly live up to all of these standards, can we? Kind of makes me feel unworthy.
But then I realize that while all of us are called to these standards, none of us are perfect. We all fail. We all sin. Jesus knows that.
Maybe this is more of a lesson, reminding us that we are not alone and we need not judge others.
Maybe it is more of an invitation, calling us to say "yes" to God whenever we have to make a moral choice.
Maybe it is more about striving to be perfect, knowing darn well that we are not perfect and cannot be perfect without God's grace.
God calls each of us to holiness, to Love, to Himself. Could that be what Jesus means by fulfilling the law?
Add some Love to the law and what do we get?
God, you know I am not perfect. Help me to work on those areas in my life that I need to work on. Help me to grow closer to you and give me the graces I need to always do the right thing. Amen.
image source


Anne said...

Colleen, I love this part: "God calls each of us to holiness, to Love, to Himself. Could that be what God means by fulfilling the law?"

I will be pondering your words today at Mass as I listen to the Gospel, remembering that without God's mercy, nothing for which I strive can ever make a difference.

God bless you Colleen and thank you for the gift of your words today.

Colleen said...

Anne, bless you. I worried over this one. Then suddenly it came to me - mercy! God bless!

Karinann said...

No need to worry over this one, Colleen. Adding love to the law and we get mercy- that says volumes for us and gives tremendous hope.
God's grace will always help us in our striving for holiness as you described here.
Thanks, hugs and God bless!

Kathleen@so much to say said...

Our diocesan vocation director used this idea of saying yes to talk about vocations (of course), but all of that comes out of daily choices to follow or not--or, more often, simply to include God in the decision. It was a great homily.

Colleen said...

Karinann, bless you too! Glad to know I was able to put into words what I felt. And I so agree with you about the hope we are given!
BTW - I think I was reading your post while you read mine! :)

Colleen said...

Kathleen, thanks so much! I like that - including God in the decision. God bless!

Maria said...

And, the law is not for the sake of the law anymore. I can't remember the verse, but I think I remember Jesus saying something like, "God gave you the law/commandments for" - hmmmm - some reason ... but since Jesus, the law becomes a living, breathing being, as the Word of God becomes flesh. I hope that makes sense!

Colleen said...

Maria, it DOES make sense! Thank you!

Mary333 said...

"Add some Love to the law and what do we get? Mercy."
Colleen, that remark gave me chills! Beautiful!

Colleen said...

Mary, thank you. It gives me chills too, to know that God loves us so much. God bless!

Jean Wise said...

very meaningful words today, Colleen. I often think law gives us the boundaries, like the pen around our sheeplike hearts to help us not to wander too far. Also have been pondering the word duty lately. the duty to delight in His word, to duty to worship. not sure how legalistic I am getting so this helped further my prayer about that word. Bless you!!

Colleen said...

Jean, God is good! Thank you for sharing this with me. God bless!

Barb Schoeneberger said...

That scripture passage is one I've pondered for a long time. The mercy part is awesome. Also, I thought that when Jesus says He came to fulfill the law, that the law points to Him. He is the natural end of the law - the center of everything. Instead of looking at the numerous burdens the Pharisees put on people, Jesus is saying "I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. Follow Me." Now we have to spend a lifetime discovering Him.

Colleen said...

Barb, I love how you put that. Amen.