3rd Sunday in Ordinary Time

Sunday, January 26, 2020
Fr. Kyle
Homily transcription: 

Today both our first reading and Gospel speak of the land of Zebulon and Naphtali.  In order to understand what God is telling us we need a little history lesson.  The land of Zebulon and Naphtali faced some dark time and a gloomy situation; wars, oppression, slavery.  But Isaiah prophesies that it is on these people in darkness and gloom will see a great light.  Matthew in today’s gospel speaks about how Jesus came from Nazareth, which is in the region of Zebulon and Naphtali.  When the prophet Nathanial hears that Jesus is from there he asks, “can anything good come from Nazareth?” 

So here is the question.  What is the Zebulon and Naphtali of your life?  As we face the dark times and gloomy situations of our life we can ask the question, “can anything good come from these crappy things in my life”?  But here’s the deal, God is constantly bringing good things at our crappy situations.  He has been doing this for thousands of years.

-        The sin of Adam and Eve became a “happy fault” which brought about the need for our redemption.

-        Abraham and Sara were unable to have children.  God makes them the mother and father of his chosen people.

-        Paul is a persecutor and murderer of Christians.  He ends up writing most of the New Testament.

-        Peter denies Jesus 3 times and Jesus makes him the first leader of his Church and the first pope.

-        Jesus suffers and dies on the cross and the world receives the greatest act of love in history

God in the bible is trying to get this point through our thick skulls.  He can bring great things out of our cruddy situations.  Archbishop Jackels uses a great analogy to explain this.  He says that our lives are full of cra… Our lives are full of manure.  And when that manure sits in a pile it just stinks.  But when we work with the cra… manure of our lives then it can become fertilizer.  We can begin to see new life and new growth come from the manure of our lives. 

Here is the question for us.  What is the Zebulon and Naphtali in your life?  What is the darkness and oppression we face in our life?  Illness (physical or psychological suffering), family or marital struggles, an old grudge we haven’t given up, a persistent sin we can’t break.  This is the manure of our lives.  We would do well to stop just sitting there and smelling it and instead start working with it so we can begin to see new life and growth sprout from it.