17th Sunday in Ordinary Time - Year C - 24th July, 2016

God Will Dwell With Us

If we want to be part of God’s people, we must allow him to live among us. But how is this possible, and what can we do in order to have some foretaste, while still on earth, of the endless joy we will have in the vision of God?

 

This is exactly what Jesus revealed to us; it is the very meaning of his coming: to communicate his life of love with the Father, so that we too can live it.

In Jesus' teachings there is the key for allowing God to dwell among us: 'Love one another as I have loved you'.

Mutual love is the key to the presence of God. 'If we love one another, God lives in us, because, as Jesus says, 'where two or three are gathered in my name, I am there among them".

Not so far off or  unattainable, then, is  the day when all the promises of the Old Testament  will be fulfilled:

'My dwelling-place shall be with them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people'.

It is all happening already in Jesus who continues, beyond his historical existence, to be present among those who live according to the new law of mutual love, the principle that makes them a people, the people of  God.

This Word of Life is therefore an urgent appeal, especially to us Christians, to witness through love to the presence of God. 'By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love  for one another'. This living out of the new commandment lays the basis for the presence of Jesus among  people.

It is up to us, Christians, even though we belong to different church communities, to let the world see 'one people' made up of every ethnic group, race, and culture, old and young, sick and healthy. One people about which others can say, as  they did of the first Christians: 'See how they love one another and are ready to give their lives for one  another.'

This is the 'miracle' humanity is waiting for in order to regain hope.  It's a  'miracle' within our reach, or better, the reach of the One who, dwelling among his own united by love, can change the destiny of the world and lead all humanity towards unity.

A commentary on a sentence from the Scripture by Chiara Lubich, Founder of the Focolare Movement.

Fr Kevin O'Shea C.M.