The WORD in Other Words by Fr Bobi Scholz SVD (Italy) for Thursday Week 33 in Ordinary Time
An unusual question: Did Jesus ever laugh? The Gospel never mentions it explicitly but it does present Jesus crying. In today‘s Gospel Jesus cried, not because he felt pain or was insulted, but because he saw Jerusalem and its people in destruction, pain and unhappiness—as a consequence of their blindness and stubbornness.
Through Jesus, through his words and instructions, God had shown them the way to peace and happiness. But “You did not know what makes for peace. You did not recognize the time of your visitation.” They did not listen. There was storm signal five, but they did not care. It is their own fault. Bulag, pipi at bingo (Blind, mute, and deaf)!
Would Jesus cry over us? We, too, are in danger of becoming inattentive to the voice of God. Passion can blind us. Laziness and carelessness may distract us from the voice of conscience. As a result, we miss chances to help others, to grow in human maturity and in Christian faith. Thieves and terrorists will sneak unnoticed into our lives, poison our minds with prejudice and our relationships with envy and anger. In marriage, if spouses don‘t notice the signs of falling out of love, unhappiness will soon strike.
Jesus warns us, too: “If only you would know what makes for peace. If only you would recognize the time of your visitation.” Mary in the temple reminds us that attention to what God wanted was a constant feature of her life. Mary was the exact opposite of the blind and deaf city of Jerusalem. Shouldn‘t we cultivate attention to God and his will for us? May it never happen that “we did not know what makes for peace.”