A reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke 12:49-53
"Jesus said to his disciples: "I have come to set the earth on fire, and how I wish it were already blazing. There is a baptism with which I must be baptized, and how great is my anguish, until it is accomplished. Do you think, that I have come to establish peace on this earth? No, I tell you, but rather division. From now on a household of five will be divided three against two, and two against three; a father will be divided against his son and a son against his father; a mother against her daughter and a daughter against her mother; a mother-in-law against her daugher in law and a daugher-in-law against her mother-in-law."
+Come Holy Spirit, Creator Blest and in my soul take up your rest Amen
"I have come to set the earth on fire!" The Gospel today is somewhat 'disturbing'. Listen to the Word: 'Fire, blazing, anguish, 'until it is accomplished', division, 'divided against', these are passionate words that draw strong images in the mind, there is a "tension". "I have come to set the earth on fire." What is the 'fire' our Lord is speaking of? This is important to grasp, because our Lord is telling us something of his mission and that's important to 'a Disciple' because it says to us-it will be part of our journey too as disciples of our Lord. Let us take a moment to ponder an image- I love this Icon of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. I could sit before it for hours. There is a 'Fire' in his heart. What is he saying to me in this image? What's the correlation between His Heart, Fire, the Word - (which he is holding in his other hand in this icon) and 'us'? Ponder it. Can you think of a time, when you were sitting at a coffee shop or restaurant with a group of friends and someone shared something that left you feeling disturbed, because it wasn't true-it wasn't of God or it wasn't in line with God's laws. Perhaps, you become more quiet in the conversation as you tried to figure out what disturbed you and why you felt so upset or disquieted inside. When you arrive at a point of clarity, perhaps you feel anger? or maybe your heart 'aches' inside you and you try to think of a way to bring the Truth into this situation but knowing deep down, that, its going to 'cost you' and that scares you. You feel torn inside because to 'call it out' (the Truth that is) will possibly be 'divisive', as it could become a confrontation with a group of friends, that you don't want to loose or maybe more accurately said, you don't want to loose their opinion of you. You start coming up with excuses of why not to say anything, and you convince yourself that 'charity' is ruling your heart to keep silence. Perhaps you feel afraid that you don't have the words you need to defend the Truth, instead you feel inadequate in the moment and interior 'poverty' affects you and you recoil and say nothing. Your heart begins pounding inside you, because you know there is a definitive-Absolute Truth, and the Holy Spirit is prompting you to speak it now! What did you do at that moment and why? What stops us from loving boldly-willing the good of the other for the sake of the other-speaking the Truth with Love? Is it Fear? Vanity? Pride? Sloth? Self-Love? Or...what drives us to 'say it' but maybe in the wrong way, in other words, without genuine Love for the other; Is it Pride, Self-righteousness? Inpatience? There is a saying: "Love without Truth is Brutality and Truth without Love is Hypocrisy." Truth and Love flow from Jesus Christ. Truth and Love must first be received within one's own heart and then it can be given and spoken. Speaking the Truth with Love is giving Jesus "entrance" into a particular situation, conversation, moment, through us. Spend some time with Jesus-allow Him to lead you where He wants to speak to your heart in this passage-Let Him show you what He so longs to heal, cleanse, love, fill your heart with, that it burns and is ablaze with Love alone.
"Be who you are meant to be, and you will set the world on fire!" (St. Catherine of Sienna)