Reflections on Gospel of III Ordinary Sunday, Year C
“The eyes of all were fixed on Him” is the way the evangelist Luke narrates what happened after Jesus had proclaimed the Word from the scroll of Isaiah.
We also know from the Gospels that Jesus desired to see Zacchaeus and Zacchaeus desired to see Jesus. Ultimately, Christian life is the outcome of these glances. God and human look for each other because they have nostalgia for each other. It’s not a Christian life to look at oneself and never at others. It’s not a Christian life first of all to look at one’s own sins. It’s not a Christian life to look at only at norms or regulations. Jesus first of all looks at the person and his needs that which he lacks to be fully human. All of us must always recover a positive look at ourselves and at others, to grow in our image and likeness of God.
Jesus, then, calls you by name, loves properly you with your personal history, your contradictory aspects, your joys and your sorrows. I would like to enter into your house and sit at the table, to live not with a judgment but with a profound intimacy. The Christian life is an intimate relationship with God the Father, revealed by Jesus on the other hand, not a list of humiliating sins to be confessed nor a mortifying punishment to be expiated. The love of God, His mercy are the foundations of everything and prevents everything. “Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.” Not tomorrow nor after the resurrection but today, in daily occurrences, in breaking every day’s bread we already enjoy the presence of God, we enjoy the presence of the Spirit in the anticipation of the ultimate fulfillment.
Those who had fixed their eyes on Jesus felt loved by Him as one day felt by Peter and Paul, woman aught in adultery or the born blind person, Zacchaeus, or many others as narrated in the Bible.
Feeling loved is the real beginning of the conversion which has its foundation in Christ. The ‘conversions’ based on norms or moral principles result in fanaticism, rigidity or elite form of pseudo Christianity. Those who feel loved by Lord, find the strength to break open pessimism and are no more slaves to their poverty but become free humans.
There’s need to live the life of grace, which is life in accordance with Beatitudes with free hands and heart that feels loved, ready to love.