2020-10-2530th Sunday in Ordinary TimeRev. Msgr. Michael J. Motta, D.Min.

I think we all recognize that the love we have for a person can find its best expression in a time of crisis. A husband may tend to grow thoughtless of his wife and fail to show signs of affection and tenderness but just let her go into the hospital for a serious operation and he will show how deep his love really is by his worry and concern. Or a mother can become annoyed with her child who always seems to be whining and complaining but just let something happen to that child, something like a disease or accident and watch her love pour out for her child. You know, it really seems a shame that sometimes we wait until a time of crisis to show how great our love is.

Jesus puts it on the line in today`s Gospel. We`ve got to love God with our whole heart; we must love God all of the time, in the little things as well as big things. We should not wait until we have some big problems; that won`t do. Love grows only one way - by loving.

Now, how can we express our love for God? The Mass is the love banquet where we have a real opportunity to think about God. We have the opportunity to hear his words in the Scriptures. We have the opportunity here of telling God that we love Him through our prayers. The Mass will not automatically help us grow in our love for God, just as human relationships do not grow automatically. People in a family can talk to each other without really communicating. They can physically dwell together under the same roof like boarders without any real personal relationship. They can eat at the same table without feeling any more sense of intimacy than do people at the same lunch counter in a coffee shop. Growth in love demands effort, especially the effort on your part. You must get involved. God is talking to you and you must listen. When Jesus renews his sacrifice through the action of the priest, you are not just a spectator. You must join with the priest in offering yourself with Christ.

Don`t let the Mass become routine. The real test of our love for God might come on a day of crisis. Prepare yourself for it by strengthening and growing in your love for God through the Mass. Good things do not come easily, nor does love come easily; you have to work at it.

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