Blessed are you..

Fr. Bob’s homily today at Mt. Irenaeus focused in large part on today’s gospel reading. He pointed out something in Luke’s Gospel that I had never heard or seen and it makes a significant difference in my reading and hearing it. The point he made was referencing verse 20 of Luke 6, “And raising his eyes toward his disciples he said..” Jesus was making his appeal on what are commonly referred to as the beatitudes to his disciples and not setting up a we/they or us/them between his disciples and the larger crowd that surrounded them. In addressing his disciples directly he was telling them and us that all aspects of the beatitudes apply to us. We who think ourselves poor and therefore blessed could actually be so caught up in ourselves and our poorness that we become full of ourselves and are therefore rich and headed for woe. It’s a significant point and one that I had overlooked until today.

Today’s gospel also reminded me of the importance of not looking to others for acceptance, but instead realizing that my acceptance comes from trying to follow God’s will for me. “Blessed are you when people hate you, and when they exclude and insult you, and denounce your name as evil on account of the Son of Man. Rejoice and leap for joy on that day! Behold, your reward will be great in heaven. For their ancestors treated the prophets in the same way.” I have to love and accept myself as I am and live in community with others, accepting their counsel, but being myself through it all. I’ve got to be square with the “man in the mirror.” Peace.

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beatitudes, gospel