3rd Sunday in Ordinary Time
1 Cor 7:29-31
The world as we know it is passing away
Recently, I started watching the video series titled “Who Am I to Judge” by Dr Edward Sri. The series is available on the formed.org website, which is accessible via a parish subscription. The first episode of the series starts with a moral dilemma posed by Dr Sri. A married man is abroad on a business trip. He meets an attractive woman on the way, and she happens to be staying at the same hotel as he is. They have a great chat at the bar over drinks, and afterwards she invites him to her room. Should he go? There was some interesting Q and A with his students about what this man should and should not do, and why. The point that Dr Sri was trying to make was not about how to analyse and justify moral decisions, but that one would know what to do in such a situation if one knows what kind of person he/she wants to become.
Advent took place not too long ago, and you might recall that in the run-up to Christmas, all the daily readings were exhortations about the end-times, and how we should prepare ourselves to meet Jesus. The first two readings for today are a reminder to always direct our lives towards the Lord.
It is very fashionable nowadays to talk about ‘living life to the full’. Certainly, that involves living in the present and appreciating all that life has to offer you. A lot of people will probably also associate this idea with pursuing happiness in the things that we do. I want to offer an alternative perspective, based on what I learned from Dr Sri’s videos. That to live life to the full means that in every decision we make, we make it in accordance with the type of person that we want to be. It may not necessarily bring about happiness; in fact, it may cause us agony when we act contrary to our own desires. But the more we practise virtues, the more they will grow in us and the more naturally these decisions will be made.
You might wish to spend some time today or this week to reflect on these questions — What kind of person do you want to become? What is the purpose that you want to fulfil by the end of your life?
(Today’s OXYGEN by Edith Koh)
Prayer: We pray for the grace to discern our purpose in life, and to commit to that purpose.
Thanksgiving: We give thanks for the times when we found deep meaning in the things we do.