Eph 2:12-22; Ps 85:9ab-10-14; Lk 12:35-38
If glory dwells in our land, the Holy Spirit is near indeed. It is the Lord himself who gives his benefits, and our land shall yield its increase. The blessings of peace and justice come into our world when we walk along the way of His steps. When we walk the way of the cross, we walk the way Jesus walked on the face of the earth. When we do not “walk on by” those who need our service, then does kindness and truth meet, only then does justice look down from heaven. This is the freedom we read about in Second Corinthians, the freedom of those who gaze upon the unveiled face of Christ, and are being transformed from glory to glory. Then, and only then, will our righteousness surpass those who gladly look good without doing much good.
The Ephesians, to whom Saint Paul addresses our first reading today, were strangers to the God of truth and love who made heaven and earth. They were aliens to the members of the Covenant the Lord God had made with Israel. Such strangers and aliens still inhabit our world today, and they are not from Ephesus. Many people in our own time live without hope and without God in their lives. How do they survive? Without meaning, purpose, or life forever, how do they survive? Until they are washed in the blood of the Lamb, they do not know peace. They still live in a world of many dividing walls of enmity. It is through the flesh of Christ upon the cross that the legal claims are abolished. It is through the broken body of Christ that two persons, former strangers and aliens, become one new person. This new person in Christ lives in peace, and is reconciled with others and with God. Indeed, this new person has the Holy Spirit so that he can call God, Abba, and cry out the truth that, “Jesus is Lord.” We are built securely upon the prophets and the Apostles and our capstone is none other than Jesus Christ. All who have been alienated and estranged are in Christ the Lord are being built up and grow together in to a sacred temple, a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.
Are we really those blessed servants? Are we the ones whom the Lord Jesus girds himself to serve at the table of his Perfect Sacrifice? Being vigilant at his arrival means having our loins gird and lamps lit in loving service of all whom the Lord Jesus has found willing and ready to come to the banquet. Not necessarily those who think themselves worthy and ready, but the lame, the blind, the poor, the left-out, the ignored, the abused, the abandoned and so many others. The surprise of the Lord Jesus’ return from a wedding, from the wedding of the Lamb with the glorious and bright woman from on high, will be equaled by the delight in having him gird his loins and serve us. Who could have ever imagined such joy? Yet, at every Mass we have nothing less than a glimpse of the glory.