Leviticus 19:1-2, 1-18; Ps 103: 1-4, 8,10, 12-13; 1 Corinthians 3:16-23; Matthew 5:38-
When we read and study the Bible, we see over and over again how much God loves and cares for his children that he has placed on earth. St. John tells us in 8:31-2, “If you make your home in My Word, you will truly be my disciples. You will learn my truth and it will set you free,” (New Jerusalem Bible).
God made a beautiful creation and placed Adam and Eve in that beauty. He gave them only one command, not to eat of the tree of good and evil in the garden. Satan, a fallen angel, tempted them to eat of that fruit and they would be like God. They ate it and suffered the consequences of their sin.
Evil continued to grow among humans, which is greatly magnified in our day. We see it everywhere. That was not God’s plan for our life here. God made a promise to that first human pair. Yet over and over we choose our own will and plan for our happiness over God’s plan. Finally, God, our loving Father, sent his Son to rescue us and change our direction. We were given free choice to choose to follow Jesus and his way or not.
God’s plan is to love and care for each other. St. Paul gave us sixteen characteristics about how to follow God plan in 1 Corinthians 13:4-8. As we get closer to Jesus each day in our prayer and reading, mostly the New Testament instructions, we become more like God in his perfection of love and kindness. Let us resolve to change our direction, repent and ask God’s Holy Spirit to direct our ways in humble righteousness.
This weekend many Catholics are gathering at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Pittsburgh, PA, to celebrated a great renewal event that happened 50 years ago. God poured out his Holy Spirit in a life-changing way on some Duquesne University students and professors at a weekend retreat. The way God empowered them was amazing. In the last 50 years, more than 120 million Catholics and many other Christians around the world have experienced the power of God to change their lives to try and be perfect as our heavenly Father is perfect.
Now God is promising to open up new floodgates of his love to bless humanity in even more powerful ways that he did at the Pittsburgh retreat back on February 18, 1967. Many of us are gathered there this weekend to pray for an even more powerful outpouring of God’s love for us. I am delighted to be part of this gathering and am praying for all of you who are reading this to benefit from this new manifestation of God’s wonderful love for us.
Let us beg God to fill us all even more with his wonderful love so we can go out to help him make the world a better place to live in as God desired.
Peace and all good!
+ Fr. Bob Hilz
(© 2017 Fr. Bob Hilz, TOR)