Thursday - 28th Week in Ordinary Time
Gospel – Luke11:47-54
Once Is Not Enough
As a teacher I can’t begin to count the number of times I had to repeat myself in the classroom. You spend half the class going over all the details of a project – due date, requirements, focus, format, bullet point after bullet point, even examples of what I expect. And then, when all is done and I am ready to move on to class notes for the day, it never fails! A student raises their hand! “So when is this due?” Was anyone listening? Don’t you get it? Sometimes it’s like beating your head against a (wailing?) wall!
That is exactly what we hear in today’s Gospel! I don’t think I realized, until these past couple of days, how extended of a discourse Jesus had with the Pharisees. It was not just a one shot and done. He went on and on at length, repeating what hypocrites they were and chastising them because their actions were at such odds with their teachings. He condemns them for demanding strict observance of the Law from the people but they themselves flaunt the Law in their own lives. Time and time again His harsh language calls them out as hypocrites. Once was certainly not enough!
God speaks to us every single day in so many different and varied ways. In the cry for help from that beggar on the street! In the eyes of our little girl asking for help with their homework! In the tears of a friend in need! In the pain of a parent suffering through their final illness! Are we listening? Does He have to repeat Himself? How many times before we listen? Does He have to yell before we hear Him above all the noise in our lives?
Even if we have to be reminded over and over again, do we hear His word? Do we respond? Do we put His words into action?