Thoughts from Father Shields – February 16

pathwayThe path to wisdom and the attaining of that sought-after wisdom is Jesus Christ.

(Sirach 15:15-20; 1Cor. 2:6-10; Matt. 5:17-37)

Most of us have heard the phrase: “I’m just not sure what I should do.” Maybe even some of us find ourselves beset by this uncertainty, at times. It is an in-between time when we are hopefully moving toward the wisdom needed to make a good choice in some area of our lives. We are looking for that “light,” “inspiration,” “insight,” that internally seems to release the brake and put us in gear. It is a good feeling! The readings today (all three!) seem to take us to that place between pondering and decision making (with follow-up action presumed!) to shower us with wisdom and tell us to choose. Most likely all of us have met (or been) the person who is continually and repeatedly weighing the options in a situation BUT NEVER MAKING A CHOICE! Sirach clearly reminds us that it IS within our power to choose, make choices, and 1 Corinthians calls us to be open to the maturity that we are capable of in making decisions.

Matthew in the Gospel today makes it clear that the path to wisdom and the attaining of that sought-after wisdom is Jesus Christ. Christ is the fulfillment of the quest of the Israelite Community. Knowing Christ will shine a much more brilliant light on the rich heritage of the Commandments given by God to Moses. Knowing Christ will allow us to capture the deeper and more grace-filled living out of the law.

Christ leads the early community–and us–to a much more profound understanding of the spirit of the law. The more that we come to know the Person of Jesus Christ the less will be our tendency to stall rather than deciding to do the “good.” Friendship with Christ removes the “brakes” that we artificially place in the way of knowing (wisdom) and doing (choosing) the will of God for us.

What a great gift to receive and give – “Yes” meaning “Yes” and “No” meaning “No”, guided by God’s enabling wisdom and love for us in the law.

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