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JULY 15. Ord Time B. Wk 15. Thu. Mt. 11. 28-30

Updated: Sep 10

Jesus said, ‘Come to me, all you who labour and are overburdened, and I will give you rest. Shoulder my yoke and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. Yes, my yoke is easy and my burden light.’


The first thing to note about this very short, but very important, Gospel text is that it involves and invitation!


And while it is addressed to all Christians it is especially directed to those of us who are enduring difficulties and trials!


And it should be noted that we are told the outcome if we respond generously to the invitation, namely; - “That we will find rest!”


We often overlook the fact God wants us to find rest and peace, and the reason we so often fail to do this is because we are looking for it in the wrong place!


The world would have us believe the way to find peace is to follow our own desires; - but the world is wrong, and eventually our own experience confirms this truth!


As St Augustine so beautifully put it; - “Our hearts were made for you O Lord; - and we will not find rest; - until they rest in you!”


But we also need to note this reading also tells us it will not be easy to find this peace, when it tells us we have to “shoulder Christ’s yoke”; - or join him in carrying the Cross!


And this is where we come face to face with our stumbling block, as few of us are generous when it comes to embracing our God-given Cross!


We are very aware of what our Cross is; - with St Paul referring to it as his “Thorn in the flesh,” but when it comes to “embracing it with a generous heart,” we fail miserably!


And we do this for a very simple reason; - “We do not “like” the Cross the Father has allocated us; - preferring to choose our own!


The Imitation puts it very well; - “Jesus today has many who love his heavenly kingdom; - but few who carry his Cross; - many who yearn for comfort; - few who long for distress; - plenty he finds to share his banquet; - few to share his fast!”


And it is interesting to note the words of Mary when first approached at the Annunciation; - “Behold the handmaid of the Lord; - be it done unto me according to God’s Will!”


And then we have the words of Christ himself; - “I did not come to do my own will; - but rather the Will of him who sent me!”


And when teaching his disciples, we have those famous instructions; - “If any many has a mind to come my way; - let him deny himself; - take up his Cross; - and follow me!”


We are all aware of this divine invitation we have been given; - so why are we so slow to respond; - given we profess to be his followers and to believe in his teachings?


Gospel Acclamation Mt11:28


Alleluia, alleluia!

Come to me, all you that labour and are burdened,

and I will give you rest, says the Lord.

Alleluia!


First reading Exodus 3:13-20 · God reveals his name to Moses


Moses, hearing the voice of God coming from the middle of the bush, said to him, ‘I am to go, then, to the sons of Israel and say to them, “The God of your fathers has sent me to you.” But if they ask me what his name is, what am I to tell them?’ And God said to Moses, ‘I Am who I Am. This’ he added ‘is what you must say to the sons of Israel: “I Am has sent me to you.”’ And God also said to Moses, ‘You are to say to the sons of Israel: “The Lord, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you.” This is my name for all time; by this name I shall be invoked for all generations to come.


‘Go and gather the elders of Israel together and tell them, “The Lord, the God of your fathers, has appeared to me, the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob; and he has said to me: I have visited you and seen all that the Egyptians are doing to you. And so I have resolved to bring you up out of Egypt where you are oppressed, into the land of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Amorites, the Perizzites, the Hivites and the Jebusites, to a land where milk and honey flow.” They will listen to your words, and with the elders of Israel you are to go to the king of Egypt and say to him, “The Lord, the God of the Hebrews, has come to meet us. Give us leave, then, to make a three days’ journey into the wilderness to offer sacrifice to the Lord our God.” For myself, knowing that the king of Egypt will not let you go unless he is forced by a mighty hand, I shall show my power and strike Egypt with all the wonders I am going to work there. After this he will let you go.’




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