March 7, 2021 – Third Sunday of Lent
Click here for the readings (https://bible.usccb.org/bible/readings/030721-YearB.cfm)
When was the last time you have a general house or room cleaning? When was the last time you yourself have cleaned your own house? Or how many times have you yourself have cleaned your own room?
Do you believe that a simple activity of cleaning your room or house yourself can be a learning and life-changing experience? Yes. Try to do a general cleaning of your house or just your room, and you get to know a lot of things about yourself as well as be in touch with your present priorities, needs, resources, response, expectations, difficulties, frustrations, adjustments, and challenges in life.
Tedious and tiring chores it may be, if we really reflect on it, house cleaning can be a necessary exercise and opportunity to improve your life. First, by house-cleaning, you will not only get a good physical exercise, you can also have a review of your life. You see, clean and treasure again what you have at present – like, your gifts, resources, plans, resolutions, and dreams. You can be in touch again with your present state of being – your difficulties, adjustments, & struggles, and make reality check of your identity, commitments, and decisions. Second, cleaning your place could be your chance to re-arrange and re-adjust your needs, wants, priorities and expectations in a more realistic manner. Along the way, you may have collected a lot of clutters, stuffs or abobots in life that are not valuable, important, and useful anymore in your journey. House-cleaning is the time to let go and say goodbye to non-essentials and to take care of what are really essentials and truly important in life. Lastly, house-cleaning can be the chance to renew and re-commit to life you choose to live. As you clean your room, you begin take hold and control, direct and make sense of your life again, and in effect, making your life more livable, tolerable, and meaningful.
You might wonder why we are talking about house or room-cleaning today.
Beyond the story about Jesus making a scene and being angry and wild inside the temple, Jesus in our gospel today is doing and calling all people then and now for a General House Cleaning. For Jews then and us today, the temple is considered to God’s home – the sacred place where God resides, lives, and dwells. We need then to revere, consecrate, respect, and behave well and righteously in God’s temple for it is where God incarnates and reveals Himself. God’s temple then is moment in space and time where and when we meet God and be with God. And at the very core of Jesus message is that God’s presence is not anymore confine into a place but now accessible and presented to all through and in Jesus. Jesus is the New Jerusalem. Jesus is God’s new temple. And whoever believes in Him, God and Jesus will reside in him. This means that we who believes in Christ today are now the extensions and representations of God’s temple. We are then today’s God’s sacred home where God resides, lives and dwells. This is how fortunate, privilege and sacred we are and we should be.
However sacred, fortunate, privilege Home to God we may be, we do need at times house or room cleaning. As today’s God’s home, we may be undeserving, unworthy, and unruly to such honor and dignity. Sometimes we may not recognize, appreciate, and commit with such dignity, and worse, may neglect and reject the privilege of being and becoming God’s home. And during these times, we need spiritual house-cleaning. We need to review our life, re-arrange and re-adjust, and recommit our life according to our identity as God’s home.
Lent is the time for our general spiritual house or room cleaning – the time to review life, the time to re-adjust and re-arrange one’s life, time to recommit to life in order to be and become today’s God’s home anew.
Again, when was the last time you yourself clean your own house or room? Try to do it again these days and it may improve your life for the better, as a person as well as a Christian.
Jesus during the first Sunday of Lent challenges us “Repent & Believe the Gospel”. God in the Lord’s Transfiguration last Sunday during the second Sunday of Lent proclaims to us: “This is my beloved Son. Listen to Him”. Now on the third Sunday of Lent Jesus confronts us: “Stop making my Father’s house a marketplace” – meaning, make God’s home Sacred, righteous & holy in us. In other words, let us do a good general spiritual house-cleaning & consecrate anew our lives to our Lord Jesus Christ.
So Help us God & Bless Us always. So May it Be. Amen.