Thursday, February 27, 2020

Gospel Reflection: Do not lose yourself [02.27.20 Luke 9:22-25]

Jesus said to his disciples:
“The Son of Man must suffer greatly and be rejected
by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes,
and be killed and on the third day be raised.”

Then he said to all,
 “If anyone wishes to come after me, he must deny himself
and take up his cross daily and follow me.
For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it,
but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it.
What profit is there for one to gain the whole world
yet lose or forfeit himself?”

Luke 9:22-25
What profit is there for one to gain the whole world yet lose or forfeit himself?  A profound question, and one that holds so much relevance today.  We now live in a world where outward appearance is more important than the truth.  A person's value is judged by how many "friends" or "followers" they have on social media, how many likes they can get on a single post.  Too much time is spent on getting that perfect lighting, that perfect angle, the perfect shot on the video. We spend too much time pretending or trying to show we are something or someone else, slowly losing ourselves.  We believe what we think others want us to believe.  We try and look how we think others want us to look.  What is lost in those moments is time with our loved ones, including God.  
We have lost much of our humanity.  The younger generation is having an issue communicating with others face to face.  I had realized how much of an issue this is when I had taken my students to the hospital the first time.  Many of them were intimidated with the thought of speaking to a patient. "What do we say to them?" was the question I kept getting.  It took so much pushing and prodding and modeling a conversation with the patient for them to overcome their fears and hesitations.
So what does this have to do with God?  If we are unable to communicate and connect with those who are in front of us or right next to us, how much more someone a bit less tangible and visible?  God is everywhere, but we must seek Him from within.  Yet we distract ourselves from seeking God and God's love while we're too busy seeking a like, a comment, a retweet from our favorite celebrities.  It has become another form of idolatry.
As we go through Lent, let is take time to let go of the worldly approval, the pretend riches for popularity.  God knows what is true in our hearts.  He knows who we really are.  Let us take the time to be with Him, and our loved ones.  Think of the sacrifice Jesus made for us.