24TH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME – C
Luke 15: 1-10 (Short form)
If you imagine yourself standing on the globe together with the other 7 billions of peoples, do you think God is still looking at you and loving you personally?
The parable of the lost sheep and coin tells us the value and the power of one: a shepherd leaves the ninety-nine to look for the lost sheep; a woman searches for one lost silver coin. When they find them, there is joy and informing their friends and neighbours, they will call for a celebration.
God is almighty, omnipotent, omniscient and immutable. These are just but few of the attributes or characteristics we know about God. Theology tells us that God is the ultimate mystery and the only way of knowing or understanding Him is through the negative way, that is by affirming what He is not. So how do we approach God who is a mystery? By encountering Him in the Paschal Mystery of Jesus who revealed God to us in his life, death and resurrection.
In the Paschal Mystery God enters into a personal relationship with humanity. He is not just one god among many! In this unique revelation, God opened the doors of the sacred to each one and calls us His child. In this remarkable association, we find our worth as individual human beings. In all the perfections of God, He finds pleasure when He relates to us as a Father as was shown to us by Jesus. In relation with Jesus, fatherhood was everything to God. As adopted children of God through Jesus, we share in this filial relationship with God as our Father. But a father is not a father without his child. It is the child who defines the fatherhood of his father. In this context, each one of us defines the fatherhood of God. Although we owe our existence to Him as God our creator but we hold the key to His greatest attribute which is fatherhood. Unless we accept Him as our Father He cannot celebrate His fatherhood; on the other hand if He does not accept us as His children, we are nothing but merely creatures. It takes one to accept and acknowledge the other to complete this filial joy! It defines our worth as children of God!
The parable of the lost sheep and coin became real in the life of Jesus in His public ministry when He healed the woman suffering from hemorrhage and the daughter of Jairus, gave sight to Bartimeus and the man born blind, raised Lazarus and the son of a widow from the dead, called Zaccheus and Matthew, and many others. These are testimonies that Jesus was concerned with individuals; He related Himself with individual human beings with special kinds of needs. He is like the shepherd who would look for the lost sheep that completes his being a shepherd. He is like the woman whose one single silver coin completes her womanhood.
From among the billions living on earth at this time, do I matter to God? Yes, I do! Because He loves me as if I am the only one in the whole world who deserves His love and attention. That’s where I get my value as a human being: I am my Father’s joy!