Alleluia: Just Listen!

Tuesday of the Fifteenth Week in Ordinary Time
July 12, 2022

Today’s Readings:

Today, in God’s Lavish Mercy, we are once again enjoined:

Alleluia, alleluia.
If today you hear his voice,
harden not your hearts.

In other words, just listen!

This verse is repeated so often because it’s so important! And the rest of our readings illustrate that fact.

In our first reading King Ahaz is in a mess with a lot of cleverly named guys trying to take over Jerusalem. Apparently Ahaz is a nervous wreck about the situation when God says, “Just listen – it’s going to be OK!”

And don’t you just love the way God encourages Isaiah to support Ahaz. God tells Isaiah to stay calm and calls the bad guys “two stumps of smoldering brands”:

Take care you remain tranquil and do not fear;
let not your courage fail
before these two stumps of smoldering brands
the blazing anger of Rezin and the Arameans,
and of the son Remaliah,

In our Gospel, Jesus warns his Capernaum neighbors about what can happen when we ignore God’s voice. Jesus loves this little village and has settled there in his early ministry. But he is upset with them:

And as for you, Capernaum:

Will you be exalted to heaven?
You will go down to the nether world.

For if the mighty deeds done in your midst had been done in Sodom,
it would have remained until this day.
But I tell you, it will be more tolerable
for the land of Sodom on the day of judgment than for you.”

Matthew 11: 22-24

So, even though today’s readings are pretty heavy, the message is simple:

  • Soften your heart in silence and reflection
  • Just listen to God speaking in your life
  • Act on the loving Word given to you

Prose: from Frederick Buechner, Now and Then: A Memoir of Vocation

Listen to your life.
See it for the fathomless mystery it is.
In the boredom and pain of it,
no less than in the excitement and gladness:
touch, taste, smell your way
to the holy and hidden heart of it,
because in the last analysis
all moments are key moments,
and life itself is grace.

Music: Ave Generose – Maureen McCarthy Draper

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