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Always There

Homily for Thursday of the 2nd Week in Ordinary Time

Jesus is always able to save those who approach God through him, since he lives forever to make intercession for them (Hebrews 7:25).

I doubt that there is anyone of my age who has not heard the State Farm Insurance jingle: “Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there.”  Their commercials portray the insurance agent as always there to help his/her customers at a time of need.  The notion that help is always available in a crisis is comforting.

The sacred writer did not speak in advertising jingles, but his thought is expressed in a similar vein this morning as we read from the Letter to the Hebrews.  Jesus, our high priest, is always able to save those who approach God through him.  Like the insurance commercial, it is a comforting thought.  The author spends a great deal of time explaining and meditating upon the comparison between Jesus and the high priest of the Jerusalem Temple.  Both of them are mediators, brokers if you will.  They make it possible for us, the client, to access the guarantor.  God’s love is available to us through Jesus.  By his sacrifice, he has reversed the sin of Adam who was denied access to God after the fall.  By his obedience, Jesus has granted us access to God whenever we are in need.

The difference between Jesus and the earthly high priest lies in the word “always.”  It is a powerful word and conveys a wonderful sense of assurance.  Jesus is always there.

This thought causes me to ask myself a question: “Am I always present to Jesus?”

A popular hymn by Paul Inwood states in the chorus: “O Lord, you are the center of my life: I will always praise you, I will always serve you, I will always keep you in my sight.”  Of course we all know that as much as we would like to make this claim, all too often we lose sight of the center of our lives and veer off the path into other less worthy activities than praising and serving the Lord.

Perhaps we could make this our mantra for the day: You are the center of my life!  Spend the day praising and serving the Lord, keeping Jesus in sight throughout the various activities of our day.

Fr. Lawrence Jagdfeld, O.F.M., Administrator

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