26th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Sunday, September 29, 2019
Fr Kyle
Homily transcription: 

I remember seeing a coffee mug that said, “People are the worst.  I’m going back to bed”.  While I didn’t totally agree I did have to chuckle because I know what it is getting at.  We often times don’t want to deal with other people and their problems.  We have enough of our own to worry about.  Such a mindset leads to a me-centered kind of life.

This seems to be exactly what is happening with the rich man in today’s gospel who doesn’t want to bother with the Lazarus at his door.  Perhaps most startling is this was not just some stranger.  This was someone at his door; someone he saw perhaps every day.  He even knew his name and later calls him by name.  But to actually have to deal with his problems would be the worst and so he just stays in his me-centered life. 

We live in an environment to that makes it easy to avoid having to deal with people.  Just the other day I was able to get gas and just pay at the pump; got groceries and did the self-checkout and ordered a sandwich from Panera for rapid pick up.  I could do all of these things and I didn’t have to deal with anybody.  But even when we do have to encounter someone it is easy to not actually care about them.  We might ask “How ya doing?”  But when they respond about their struggles we think,  “whoa, easy, I don’t actually care how you’re doing I just was trying to be nice and then get on with my life.”

Christ invites us to a radical shift in perspective.  A shift that is counter intuitive because I have to think about more than just myself.  A shift that is counter-cultural because we consider others.  It is a shift from a life that revolves around me, to a life that revolves around Thee (that revolves around God).  And I would like to suggest 3 practical ways we can do this:

1.      Give to the poor.  “Wow Father, what a earth-shattering thought.  Never heard that one before.” 

2.      Take at least 5 minutes in prayer to simply admit that God is God, and I am not.  By doing this, all of the pressures that push in on a me-centered life begin to subside because they are all centered on God.

3.      Finally, take time everyday to ask someone how they are doing, and then actually take time to listen and care about how they are doing.  This helps us to realize that a life worrying about others is way more fulfilling than a life worried about myself.

It is that it is easy to become indifferent to the needs of others.  It is easy to just live a me-centered life and be indifferent to others around us.   It is easy to not even bother with others because, after all, I have my own life to worry about. 

"Have I built my life around Jesus? Or have I fit following Jesus into the life I've built?"