Some Thoughts on Violence and Homily 16th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A

16th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A
Wisdom 12:13, 16-19
Romans 8:26-27
Matthew 13:24-43
July 20, 2014

Our God is all-knowing and all-powerful.  There is nothing God cannot do.  God can choose to do whatever he wants.

What does God choose to do?  God chooses to love.

When we sin God could choose to destroy us or to abandon us.  Instead, because God loves, he chooses to show leniency.  God doesn’t have to forgive us but he does.  God so loved the world that he gave his only son.

Won’t it be nice if we always made good choices?  God loves us enough to give us free will.  Unfortunately, we don’t always choose to do what is good in God’s eyes.

We can look at the world and see bad events.  There is violence in our streets; like in Chicago where every weekend for a few weeks there have a significant number of shootings.

It’s across the world.  There’s the kidnapping of almost 300 girls in Nigeria a few weeks ago.  For the past two weeks, Hamas and Israel were exchanging missile fire.  On Thursday, Israel went into Gaza with ground forces.

There has been conflict in Ukraine.  On Thursday, a passenger plane was shot down by a missile over Ukraine.  They are still sorting this out but we assume it has something to do with the conflict there.

None of this is God’s will.  It happens because of the choices people make.  We can, we must pray for an end to all of this violence.  Unfortunately, it continues because people continue to make bad choices.

God could choose to end all of it but God is lenient.  God gives us second chances, and third chances that we need.

We hear Jesus telling the parable about the good seed and the weeds.  The workers want to rip out the weeds.  It’s standard gardening to get rid of the unwanted weeds.

Should God get rid of all the bad?  We desire a world full of good people but unlike with weeds there are no unwanted people.  God wants everyone to be part of his kingdom.  That’s why God is lenient.  That is why God sends his only Son to redeem us.  Jesus also tells the parable of the mustard seed, the smallest of seeds but it grows into the largest of plants.  In the little seed is great potential.

God has planted the seed of good in all of us and gives us the time we need to make something good.  But we do not have an eternity to do good.  The time to stop sinning is now.  We must act out of love, the same love that God shows for us.

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