Friday, March 28, 2008

Heart, Soul, Mind and Strength

One of the scribes came and heard them arguing, and recognizing that He had answered them well, asked Him, "What commandment is the foremost of all?" Jesus answered, "The foremost is, 'HEAR, O ISRAEL! THE LORD OUR GOD IS ONE LORD; AND YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND, AND WITH ALL YOUR STRENGTH.'

(Mark 12:28-31)

That is how the Love of God is commanded: with ALL of one's heart, soul, mind and strength. Everything. Total. Absolute, no-holds barred commitment.

Do we think anyone among us today can rightfully claim before God of strictly following the first and foremost commandment? Much less the second which commands us to love our neighbor as ourselves? Do our constant thoughts, actions, feelings, words and deeds attest to total obedience? Maybe the most pious among us tries their best to do so, but then Jesus didn't say "You shall TRY to love..." rather, "You SHALL love...". In other words - Huwag mong subukan, gawin mo!

Impossible? If we read along further, we see that the scribe understood Jesus' words clearly and even confirmed it by repeating His words, as well as acknowledging that it " much more than all burnt offerings and sacrifices". Now lets pay attention what happens next. When Jesus saw that the scribe understood intelligently, He said:

"You are not far from the kingdom of God.".

The first step is understanding. An understanding that comes with acceptance. Only then can we attempt to reconcile it with our constant thoughts, actions, feelings, words and deeds. Then, like the scribe - we should not be far from the Kingdom of God.

But - it will take His mercy and gifts of grace to bring us completely there.

I think about that as we approach the second Sunday of Easter: the Divine Mercy Sunday.

No comments: