”How can a man be just before God? ”
A reading from the Book of Job (Job 9:1-12.14-16)
Job answered his friends: “Truly I know that it is so: But how can a man be just before God? If one wished to contend with him, one could not answer him once in a thousand times. He is wise in heart, and mighty in strength — who has hardened himself against him, and succeeded? — he who removes mountains, and they know it not, when he overturns them in his anger; who shakes the earth out of its place, and its pillars tremble; who commands the sun, and it does not rise; who seals up the stars; who alone stretched out the heavens, and trampled the Waves of the sea; who made the Bear and Orion, the Pleiades and the chambers of the south; who does great things beyond understanding, and marvellous things without number. Behold, he passes by me, and I see him not; he moves on, but I do not perceive him. Behold, he snatches away; who can hinder him? Who will say to him, ‘What are you doing?’ “How then can I answer him, choosing my words with him? Though I am innocent, I cannot answer him; I must appeal for mercy to my accuser. If I summoned him and he answered me, I would not believe that he was listening to my voice.”
The word of the Lord.
RESPONSORIAL PSALM Psalm 88: 10bc-11.12-13.14—15 (R. 3a)
R/. Let my prayer come into your presence, O Lord.
I call to you, Lord, all day long;
to you I stretch out my hands.
Will you work your wonders for the dead?
Will the shades rise up to praise you? R.
Will your mercy be told in the grave,
or your faithfulness in the place of perdition?
Will your wonders be known in the dark,
your justice in the land of oblivion? R.
But I, O Lord, cry out to you;
in the morning my prayer comes before you.
Why do you reject me, O Lord?
Why do you hide your face from me? R.
ALLELUIA Philippians 3:8-9a
Alleluia. I count everything as refuse, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him. Alleluia.
“I will follow you wherever you go.”
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke (Luke 9 :57-62)
At that time: As Jesus and his disciples were going along the road, a man said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.” And Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man has nowhere to lay his head.” To another he said, “Follow me.” But he said, “Lord, let me first go and bury my father.” But he said to him, “Leave the dead to bury their own dead; but as for you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God.” Another said, “I will follow you, Lord; but let me first say farewell to those at my home.” Jesus said to him, “No one who puts his hand to the plough and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.”
The Gospel of the Lord.
“Foxes have holes but the son of man has nowhere to lay his head,” He went about doing good, he healed the sick, raised the dead, fed the hungry and comforted the afflicted. Yet he was homeless and poor, making his home with the wretched of the earth. That was his life and that is the path every believer is called to follow. It is a call to a life of total self-giving and sacrifice; to live for God and for others without counting the cost. And once we say Yes, there is no backing down or turning back, for only cowards do that! How much sacrifice can we make in the service of the Lord?