Thoughts on the Readings for the 5th Sunday in Ordinary Time (A) 2014

Click on the link below or paste it into your browser to find to the readings for this weekend: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/020914.cfm

In our Gospel this weekend, Jesus tells his disciples:  “You are the salt of the earth.”  “You are the light of the world.”  These words are so familiar that it would be easy to miss their meaning.  Specifically, I think they remind us of two very important things.   First, notice that Jesus didn’t say you “will be” the salt of the earth, or you “will be the light of the world.  Rather he said: “You are.”   This reminds us that in our lives --- in the here and now and not at some point in the future --- we are to be salt and light to the world around us..  Second, though, both salt and light have an impact, and it doesn’t take much of either for that impact to be noticed.   A little salt can add flavor to a meal, while too much salt can ruin it.  In the same way even a small amount of light can guide us on a dark night, while too much light can blind us.   Clearly, even in small ways, we can be salt and light to our world and can make a difference. 

Our first reading this weekend is taken from the Book of the Prophet Isaiah.    It shares the theme of the Gospel and tells us very practically how we can be salt and light in our world.   “Share your bread with the hungry, shelter the oppressed and the homeless; clothe the naked when you see them, and do not turn your back on your own.  Then your light shall break forth like the dawn………………… If you remove from your midst oppression, false accusation and malicious speech; if you bestow your bread on the hungry and satisfy the afflicted; then light shall rise for you in the darkness,”

Our second reading this weekend is taken from the first Letter of Saint Paul to the Corinthians.  In the section we read this weekend, Paul reminds the people of Corinth.  That he did not speak to them with “sublimity of words or of wisdom …………… so that your faith might rest not on human wisdom, but on the power of God.”   

Questions for Reflection/Discussion:

1.    Where are you called to be salt and light in your life?
2.    What concretely and specifically do you need to do be salt and light? 
3.    Have you ever encountered someone who spoke with “sublimity of words and wisdom,” but really didn’t say much?  

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