Homily Outline Twenty-Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time Cycle C Sept 29, 2019
NOTE: This is an outline from which I worked, but it gives you the general idea of the homily.
This past Wednesday I went for my annual check up to my ophomologist, my eye doctor.
Seems that our eyeballs = basketballs, but I have eyeballs shaped like footballs. It makes focusing difficult.
Therefore, I have worn glasses… they are a nuisance, but necessary.
I mention this because in the spiritual life, like in regular life, seeing is very important. An important question at the beginning of growing in the spiritual life, and throughout, is “WHAT DO YOU SEE?”
Our Gospel today poses that question to us. What do you see?
Our Gospel presents us with two men: Lazarus the beggar, and a rich man with no name.
Our Psalm today describes those who “delight in the law of the Lord…” It says “They are like trees planted by streams of water, which yield their fruit in its season, and their leaves do not wither. In all they do they prosper.” Sounds pretty good.
Those who do not follow the Lord or keep God’s laws, on the other hand, “are like chaff that the wind drives away.” A big NOTHING. In another place the wicked are compared to withered shrubs in a barren, salt waste.
The contrast is between luxurious growth and dried-up, withered, barrenness. Between the well irrigated and watered gorgeous trees on UT..
So which of the two men in the Gospel is which? What do you see?
Is Lazarus, the poor begger, covered with sores, longing to eat the scraps that fall from the rich man’s table, the tree planted by water, full of fruit and leaves that do not wither, or is the rich man, dressed in fine purple, feasting sumptuously each day, the verdant tree?
Which is like the chaff blown away by the wind, or like the dried up shrub in the desert, barely alive?
The Gospel challenges us to change our focus. To see not the exterior, but the deeper reality that God sees. To look beyond the surface.
When you see someone dressed in Armani suits, and driving a Lexus or a Tesla, with a big home and lots of material wealth, do you see someone who is really fortunate, someone you wish you could be like, someone you envy? OR do you see someone who puts his pants on one leg at a time? Someone who has hopes and dreams, fears, limitations, insecurities, foibles? A fellow human in need of redemption? \
And when you see when you see some dirty, smelly, off-putting beggar on Guadalupe Street, do you see just a bum? Or an unfortunate fellow? Or a fellow human being? A brother? A fellow human in need of redemption?
The Gospel today is like a pair of spiritual glasses adjusting our sight, to see better, to see deeper, to see more as God sees.
What do you see?