Isaiah 45:1, 4-6
1 Thess. 1:1-5ab
In the gospel reading for our Sunday service today Jesus admonishes the Pharisees and the Herodians and, although they have approached him with a trap, Jesus refuses to humiliate or even force their allegiance to him, but rather invites them to, “Give to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” A theme continued from the gospel from last Sunday(Matt. 22:1-14), that of Jesus inviting us. Today Jesus invites us to embrace our total belonging to God, who has called us each by name.
Just as the image of Caesar stamped on the Roman coin indicates that the coin belongs to Caesar; the image of God stamped on every human being asserts that each one of us belongs to God.
God has chosen us, and is inviting us to make a choice; we have the freedom to live for Him and the choice of what to do with the life that he has given to us. Belonging to God enables us to mirror His compassionate concern for the good of human society and the well-being of all. When our lives are given to Him He is able to show himself through us and work through us.
We are faced with many difficult decisions and choices, especially as believers living in today’s modern world, but we must remember that every part of our life belongs to God. What better way is there to repay to God what is truly His than by the words of St.Paul, as he encourages the community in Thesselonica to continue in their work of faith and labour of love and steadfastness of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.
Today the Catholic church celebrates World Mission Sunday, in recognition of the truth that every Christian shares in the mission of the church: to spread the good news of the gospel by our lives and by our actions. I would invite you today, and this week, to pray especially for the missionary work of the people of God and to consider your part in spreading the good news of Christ.
A Prayer to give God my whole being
I give you my hands to do your work.
I give you my feet to go your way.
I give you my eyes to see as you do.
I give you my tongue to speak your words.
I give you my mind that you may think in me.
I give you my spirit that you may pray in me.
Above all, I give you my heart that you may love in me,
your Father, and all mankind.
I give you my whole self that you may grow in me,
so that it is you, Lord Jesus, who live and work in me.