Gospel : Luke 14 : 25 – 53
Great crowds made their way to Jesus.
The people of Palestine have heard about You. They come to see the marvellous things that You do. They have heard Your teaching which is not “like that of the scribes”. You have known human success, Lord. You have been able to see huge crowds searching for You.
The crowds are thirsty for happiness, light. They are ready to run to whoever will provide them with what they await. But deception comes quickly, because humans cannot satisfy the deep desires of hearts.
He turned and spoke to them:
You do not seek Your own glory in making these beautiful promises to the crowds! Certainly You have told them, and You will tell them again, the Good News, the love of God for everyone. But You don’t hide the requirements of this love. You are in fact on the way towards your last journey to Jerusalem and You know what awaits You there: suffering, the cross, rejection by the same crowds which the leaders of the people will turn against You ….
If anyone comes to Me …
You are clear: it is not a peaceful human life that You suggest. How hard Your words seem! How demanding they are! You are aware of this, and, through two parables, You invite us to reflect well on this. You await from us, a free response, a response of love …. Yes, if You are so demanding, it is through love for us …. If You demand of everyone that they follow You, if You thus want to “empty” us of ourselves, it is to fill us more fully with Yourself, it is to let us share Your life…. You go up to Jerusalem. There, You will tell us how far love goes: to the cross!
Let me not be afraid of Your love, Lord …. let me open my heart to You in all trust, and follow You even if the climb is rough!