Wednesday of the Thirty-first Week in Ordinary time
(Philippians 2:12-18; Luke 14:25-33)
St. Paul’s words about perversity ring in most people’s minds these days. However, the people are divided about what it comprises. Some see perversity in the attitude and actions of the American president and his supporters. These people find the equating of racial bigots with civil rights activists outrageously scornful. They judge fear-mongering about falsely documented immigrants as merciless and hateful.
Another ideological bent judges as bankrupt many of contemporary society’s mores. The people of this large segment are indignant over the increasingly high percentage of children born outside of marriage. They reel at the indifference with which many, concentrating on their smart phones, ignore one another. Generally elderly, these folk yearn for the past when civility meant addressing a stranger by her or his last name with the proper salutation.
Both sides of the ideological divide can build up arguments for their moral persuasions. Today’s reading from Philippians tells us that present outrage is nothing new. Sin and injustice have been rooted in the world since almost the beginning. But it exhorts us to rise above the mire by following Jesus, the Lord. Later in the letter Paul tells his readers: “…our citizenship is in heaven.” We care about the world because Jesus died to redeem it. But if we have embraced him, we know that soon enough either we will pass or it will pass away. In either case we will take our places in a new world of justice and love.