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January 31 - A Loving Example

A Loving Example
Homily for 4th Sunday of OT

I think there are certain people in life that teach us very valuable life lessons.
Coaches might help us understand sportsmanship
Teachers might help us understand the value of knowledge
Friends may teach us how to share
And siblings might teach us how to trust
I think for each of us, we can trace certain people in our lives that have had such great influences in our lives…
…That have taught us to bring out the best in ourselves
And I’m sure there are people you can point to that helped you understand the meaning of love
For most of us, these people are our parents
Whenever I look back to my own childhood, I can’t help but to remember many examples of my parents sacrificing so much to make sure that I was okay
Time to take me to sporting events
Sacrificing their own wellness when taking care of me when I was sick
They were the first ones to teach me that love was reaching outside of myself for others

This Sunday we hear from one of the most popular readings from the letters of St. Paul
As a matter of fact, Hollywood liked it so much that they would often use this reading in movies that featured a wedding
Why is it so popular?
I think St. Paul helps us understand what love is but first explaining what love is not
He was speaking to a Corinthian community that had a very hard time with the concept of love
Many in the community were doing everything that was the opposite of love
They were jealous, pompous, inflated, and rude
They sought was in their best individual interest
But by not striving for love, they became a broken community
They were a version of themselves that they were not happy about being

But St. Paul did not just slap them on the wrist and tell them what they were doing wrong
He gave them a goal to shoot for
Love rejoices in all things
It endures, believes, and hopes
Ultimately love is about wishing the best for the other
And helping them become the best version of themselves
Wishing heaven for them

My friends, we are constantly introduced to examples of love in the world
I think we can see examples so much more today because we see so many examples of what love is not
If love is not the foundation of our lives, everything else crumbles
We are never satisfied
We live as a shell of ourselves
And our God who is Love itself has always wanted His Children thrive

At the end of the day, we can become so critical of what we see in the world today
But are we giving the world examples of this love that God wants us to show
Are we helping others be the best version of themselves?
When others look back on their lives and see the best examples they’ve had in life, would they see our face?
Remember the command Christ gave us: Love one another as I have loved you
You simply have to look at the cross to see how He loved us…
… because He gave us His all