Monday, July 2, 2018

God's Faithfulness

In today's first reading, Amos 2: 6-10, 13-16, the prophet Amos is speaking, I believe, directly to us today in the following message:  Thus says the Lord: for three crimes of Israel, and for four, I will not revoke my word; Because they sell the just man for silver,  and the poor man for a pair of sandals. They trample the head of the weak into the dust of the earth, and force the lowly out of the way....Upon garments taken in pledge they decline beside any altar; And the wine of those who have been fined they drink in the house of their god."  Some world leaders, including the U.S., I believe, are doing exactly what Amos states.  Just men and women are being sold for drugs, for sex, for loading the pockets of billionaires. Poor men and women are being sold for whatever some of the rich covet. By lowering taxes on billionaires and easing re taxes of the poor, profiteers "drink in the house of their god," that is unearned wealth, abused power and control. The "head of the weak" are being trampled "into the dust of the earth" and "the lowly" are forced "out of the way," put into cages, detained in detention centers, returned to a country where their lives and the lives of their children are in danger. 

Amos tells us that God "will not revoke" his word. Even though you and I are unfaithful, God remains faithful to His promises. We are told in the Gospels, that Jesus has come, not to condemn the world but to save it.  God does not go back on that promise.  Salvation is ours if we claim it by living in the the Light and in the Truth, cooperating with God's grace, living up to our baptismal promises. Salvation is ours by the choices we make to do good, act justly, love tenderly and walk humbly with our God (see Micah 6:8). Salvation is ours when we respect each person's right to freedom and to a just wage; when we help all peoples experience liberty, justice and happiness; when we reach out to the needy and oppressed, the sick and deprived of this world; when, in short, we return evil with good.

What kind of choices am I, are you making? Am I, are you, living in the Light or have we chosen to live in the dark and spread darkness into other people's lives?  One comes leads to an eternity of darkness--not God' choice for you or me. The other choices leads to an eternity of light and love--God's choice for all of us.

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