10 June – Tuesday in Tenth Week in Ordinary Time
1 Kings 17:7-16
After a while the stream dried up, for the country had no rain. And then the word of the Lord came to Elijah, ‘Up and go to Zarephath, a Sidonian town, and stay there. I have ordered a widow there to give you food.’ So he went off to Sidon. And when he reached the city gate, there was a widow gathering sticks; addressing her he said, ‘Please bring me a little water in a vessel for me to drink.’
She was setting off to bring it when he called after her. ‘Please’ he said ‘bring me a scrap of bread in your hand.’ ‘As the Lord your God lives,’ she replied ‘I have no baked bread, but only a handful of meal in ajar and a little oil in a jug; I am just gathering a stick or two to go and prepare this for myself and my son to eat, and then we shall die.’ But Elijah said to her, ‘Do not be afraid, go and do as you have said; but first make a little scone of it for me and bring it to me, and then make some for yourself and for your son. For thus the Lord speaks, the God of Israel:
“Jar of meal shall not be spent,
jug of oil shall not be emptied,
before the day when the Lord sends
rain on the face of the earth”.’
The woman went and did as Elijah told her and they ate the food, she, himself and her son. The jar of meal was not spent nor the jug of oil emptied, just as the Lord had foretold through Elijah.
Jesus said, ‘You are the salt of the earth. But if salt becomes tasteless, what can make it salty again? It is good for nothing, and can only be thrown out to be trampled underfoot by men.
‘You are the light of the world. A city built on a hill-top cannot be hidden. No one lights a lamp to put it under a tub; they put it on the lamp-stand where it shines for everyone in the house. In the same way your light must shine in the sight of men, so that, seeing your good works, they may give the praise to your Father in heaven.’
But if salt becomes tasteless, what can make it salty again?
Whenever I eat a dish that does not have much salt in it, something always seems to be missing for the food tastes bland. However, when salt is added, the food becomes much tastier, and the meal is more enjoyable. The essence of salt is its taste; its purpose is to enhance the food of the taste. Hence, if salt loses its taste, it would no longer be added to our food. It would become useless.
Like salt, we all have an essence and a purpose in our lives. What is this essence, you might ask? I believe that our essence is the light within us which manifests itself in many ways: love, joy, peace, hope, strength, patience, kindness, forgiveness, gentleness, wisdom, maturity, etc. All of us have this light within us. Some of us have a light which shines brightly; others have a dimmer light – but we all have a light nonetheless.
In our world which is becoming increasingly self-centered, to discover this light shining in each other is becoming a rarity. Nonetheless, the privilege of witnessing the glow of this light in another is always heartwarming and inspiring.
For example, witnessing a simple gesture of someone give up his/her seat in a bus for another always makes me feel like there is still goodness and light in people. It always makes me feel like wanting to be that person: to do more good deeds and look for opportunities to give my seat up for another. I suppose light never remains in one person but always has the power to inspire others.
Therefore, let us continually look for ways to reveal our light to others so that the light within them may be kindled by our flame. Let us also hold on to the truth that we, you and I, are the salt and light of the world. The spirit of darkness would try to convince us that we are not; that we are not good enough; that we are bad so that we would give up on doing good deeds. However, as long as we are still alive, every moment presents a new opportunity to shine for the glory of God.
(Today’s reflection by Jean Cheng)
Prayer: Lord, help us to reject the lies of the evil one and to believe that we truly are your salt and your light in this world. Help us to shine in “small” and big ways to glorify you.
Thanksgiving: We give thanks to God who entrusts us with the responsibility of bringing light to others.
11 June, Wed – Acts 11:21b-26; 13:1-3 Matthew 10:17-19 – Feast of St Barnabas
12 June, Thu – 1 Kings 18:41-46; Matthew 5:20-26
13 June, Fri – 1 Kings 19:9a. 11-16; Matthew 5:27-32
14 June, Sat -1 Kings 19:19-21; Matthew 5:33-37
15 June, Sun – Exodus 19:2-6a; Romans 5:6-11; Matthew 9:36-10:8; Eleventh Sunday in Ordinary Time
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