Our theme for today’s readings is : God’s call and our response.
2nd Sunday of lent
Here is from our Sunday missal:
“In the Catholic tradition, the idea of vocation (calling) was very much restricted to priesthood and religious life. We should not forget that this special call rests upon the general call, which is basic to all Christians, namely, the call to a new existence.
“Today’s Liturgy deals with the call of Abraham. Both Abraham’s call and your own implies three elements.
1. The first is God’s free choice. ‘Not according to our works but according to His own design’ (Second Reading); ‘it was love of you’ (Gn 7:7-8).
2. The second is a mission, which could entail leaving the safe, the familiar, the known, and accepting the new and untried. ‘Bear your share of the hardship for the Gospel’ (Second Reading). As a Christian you do have a mission to your family, your parish, your community, coworkers in your job, fellow students in school, friends.
3. The third is a promise, which in Abraham’s case consisted of a posterity—children: ‘I will make of you a great nation’ (First Reading). In the case of Christians it consist of life and immortality (Second Reading).
“An appreciative fidelity to your calling requires faith. The promises are real but cannot yet be verified as the Gospel of Transfiguration brings out: ‘When the disciples raised their eyes, they saw no one else but Jesus alone.’”
Today’s theme is “God’s Call and Our Response.”
Here are six examples of God’s calling in the Sacred Book:
1. God’s call to Abraham: “Leave your country, your relatives, and your father’s home, and go to a land that I am going to show you. I will give you many descendants, and they will become a great nation. I will bless you and make your name famous, so that you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you. But I will curse those who curse you. And through you I will bless the nations.”
Abrahams response: “When Abraham was 75 years old, he started out from Haran, as The Lord had told him to do; and Lot went with him. Abraham took his wife Sarah, his nephew Lot, and all the wealth and all the slaves they had acquired in Haran, and they started out for the land of Canaan.” (Genesis 12:1-5)
2. God’s call to Isaiah: “Whom shall I send. Who will be our messenger.”
Isaiah’s response: “I will go! Send me.” (Isaiah 6:8)
3. God’s call to Joseph: When Joseph learned that Mary was pregnant, even though he was not responsible for it, he planned to break the engagement privately. But an Angel of The Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph, descendant of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife. For it is by The Holy Spirit that she has conceived. She will have a son and you will name him Jesus — because He will save His people from their sins.”
Joseph’s response : “When Joseph woke up, he married Mary.” (Matthew 1:18-25)
4. God call to Mary: An Angel said to her,”Don’t be afraid Mary. God has been gracious to you. You will become pregnant and give birth to a son and you will name him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High God. The Lord God will make Him a king as His ancestor David was and He will be king of the descendants of Jacob forever; His Kingdom will never end. The Holy Spirit will come on you, and God’s power will rest upon you. For this reason the holy child will be called the Son of God. Remember your relative Elizabeth. It is said that she cannot have children, but she herself is now six month’s pregnant, even though she is very old. For there is nothing that God cannot do.”
Mary’s response: “I am The Lord’s servant. May it happen to me as you have said.” (Luke 1:30-38)
5. Jesus Calls Four Fishermen: As Jesus walked along the shore of Lake Galilee, He saw two brothers who were fishermen. Simon (called Peter) and his brother Andrew, catching fish in the lake with a net. Jesus said to them, “Come with me and I will teach you to catch people.”
Peter and Andrew’s response: “At once they left their nets and went with him.”
Jesus went on and saw two other brothers, James and John, the sons of Zebedee. They were in their boat with their father Zebedee, getting their nets ready. Jesus called them.
James and John’s response: “At once they left the boat and their father, and went with Him.” (Matthew 4:18-22)
6. Jesus chooses Saul (Paul) to serve Him: As Saul was coming near the city of Damascus, suddenly a light from the sky flashed around him. He fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him: “Saul, Saul! Why do you persecute me?” “Who are you, Lord?” he asked. “I am Jesus whom you persecute,” the voice said. “But get up and go into the city,where you will be told what you must do.” (Acts 9:3-6)
Take note that every one of us Christians has a calling and somehow that calling will always be connected to serve the Twin Mission of The Lord, namely:
1. To help bring people back to God and to live with Him in eternity.
2. To help change the world.
What is your calling? What is God’s will for you?
Bo Sanchez, quoting Fr. Manoling Francisco said, “God’s will is your deepest desire,” meaning God’s will for you is the same as your heart’s deepest desire. God has planted that desire in our hearts before we were born. We should not be searching for that will (our calling) from the outside, but from the inside of our being. In the end, God’s will for us is also where our happiness will be.