“Whoever Does The Will Of God Is My Brother And Sister And Mother.”

06-09-2024Weekly ReflectionFr. Manasseh Iorchir, VC

We are back to taking our Readings on the weekends from the Ordinary Time after the celebration of Easter, Pentecost, the Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity and Corpus Christi. This weekend, the Tenth Sunday of Ordinary Time in Year B, we are treated to the intriguing dialogue between God the Creator and Adam the disobedient creature after the first fall. Recall that God had created Adam and had placed him and Eve in the Garden of Eden where all that they would need was provided.

God gave them just one rule which required them not to eat of the forbidden tree of knowledge at the center of the garden. Tempted to self-deification, power and pride, Adam ate the forbidden fruit, his eyes became opened and as a consequence he suddenly realized that he and his spouse were naked. This is the consequence of sin: the sudden realization that the momentary pleasure that sin and disobedience affords us always gives way to an excruciating feeling of guilt that torments us till we make peace with God and our neighbor. Thus, sin does not truly empower us but reveals our weakness when we choose to stand apart from God. The man who lives without God risks living an unfulfilled life in this world and barely has any hope for a life after this one.

Genesis recounts that after Adam had sinned and was “hiding” from God, the Lord came to the garden to search for Adam, His beloved creature. God did not abandon Adam when Adam sinned but took the initiative to search man out when he was in hiding and fleeing. We must always remember that we are not the ones who search for God, but He who searches for us even when we willfully drift away from His love. Those of us who “find God” realize, in hindsight, that our journey was being orchestrated by God all along. So God came to the garden and asked, “Adam, where are you?” This question is full of meaning and the answer that Adam volunteered is equally instructive. Surely, the omniscient God knew exactly what geographical area Adam could be located. By asking “Adam, where are you?” God was in essence asking “Adam, I made you to be in righteous relationship with Me in obedience, where are you in that relationship?” “ Are you sure you are where you ought to be, where I made you to be, or are you somewhere else?” We can apply this same question to ourselves in our relationship with God. Where are you in your relationship with God? Are you doing the will of God? Are you a brother or sister of Jesus, the Son of the Father, who came to teach us how to surrender ourselves to, and find peace in, God’s will?

Adam’s response was literally what we do most times after we realize that we have done something wrong: blame everyone else but ourselves. So Adam blamed Eve, and ultimately God for giving him Eve, who led him to eat the forbidden fruit. Genesis Chapter 3 tells the story of Adam’s lack of moral leadership and acceptance of responsibility for his moral cowardice and sloth. Like Adam, we often fail to take responsibility for our actions that lead to sin, rather, we blame the devil, our spouse, our family, our parents, our colleagues, even our children, everyone else and even everything other than ourselves. We should realize that the return to righteousness begins with the acceptance of responsibility and the admittance of our need for God’s mercy.

In the dialogue between God and Adam, we see that God does not abandon Adam but gifts him a fair hearing. It is interesting that when the Son of God was brought to trial before the sons of Adam, He received no fair hearing as the sons of Adam screamed, “away with Him, crucify Him, crucify Him”. May Divine assistance enable us to always return to our original innocence, a righteous relationship with our maker which God bestowed on us when He made us, may we seek to do God’s will at all times and in all things and so be the true brothers and sisters of Jesus, the eternal Son of God.

Please be kind and may God bless you.

Fr. Manasseh