PRODUCING LIFE-GIVING FRUITS

June 22, 2022 – Wednesday of the 12th Week in Ordinary Time

Click here for the readings (https://bible.usccb.org/bible/readings/062222.cfm)

The laws and decrees of the Lord are important and essential in the life of the people of God. In fact, the whole Bible talks about this importance that indeed, it is in following the precepts of the Lord that we shall find fullness of life. Hence, every law and decree of the Lord is expressive of the covenant with God that gives life to the people.

This is what the first reading tries to tell us in the Second Book of Kings. When the King was made aware of the covenant with God and the unfaithfulness done by his ancestors, he realized how far they have gone away from the Lord. This made the king to recognize those sins and to repent which was symbolized by tearing off his garment. From that repentance, the king led the people to renew once more the covenant they had with God by following ordinances, statutes and decrees of the Lord with all their hearts and souls.

This is an acknowledgement that no matter how affluent or comfortable we can be in life, but when we are far from the presence of God, then we find life empty and full of sadness. Life is being lived fully through the grace of God.

Meaning to say that the covenant  with God with its laws and decrees are ways of achieving the fullness of life and being fruitful in life. And being fruitful in life means living in peace, in freedom, in inspiring and giving life for others.

This is what the Gospel reminds us today. Jesus calls us to be fruitful in life and at the same time to be careful of false prophets who seduce us with empty promises of fruitfulness.

The main intention of false prophets is to bring us away from the covenant with God, and to ultimately keep us away from the fullness of life and leading us instead into the corruption of life.

False prophets can appear to us as a real or virtual person who may persuade us to believe in false hopes, false alarms, fake news and disinformation especially with what is happening around us today. The intention of persuading us to believe has certainly contained hidden political or religious agenda. But beware of these and be discerning because these will only bring away from reality and from our community.

Moreover, such false prophets can also take the form of empty promises from various addictions. Gambling, alcohol, drugs, sex, shopping, gadgets, or even excessive internet usage may promise to fill our empty and broken hearts that long for attention and care, recognition and acceptance, affection and love. These forms of false prophets may also seduce us to believe that these addictions and unhealthy coping mechanisms can provide relief from the pain that we feel, from the pain of losing a loved one, from a heartbreak, from rejection, or from failure, shame and guilt. However, this is not true at all. Succumbing ourselves into these empty promises will only bring us deeper into ruin and corruption of our life and of life around us.

When we realize that this kind of person, media site, or attitude and perspective in life does not bring us closer to God but away from Him, away from our true selves and from other people, then, beware because that will only bring us to bad fruits being produced and to corruption of life.

Thus, as Jesus calls us to live life fully by following his desire for us, may our actions and words, our relationships and encounters with people may truly produce life-giving fruits of love, of understanding, and of peace and reconciliation in our communities. Kabay pa.

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