EIGHTEENTH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME YEAR A
ISAIAH 55:1-3, ROMANS 8:35,37-39, MATTHEW 14:13-21
GOD PROVIDES FOR US FREELY, SO SHOULD WE FOR OTHERS
One of the most important needs of man is food. All the work we do daily is to be able to meet our basic needs with food at the top of the list. People can go any length to satisfy their appetite.
In the first reading of today, the prophet Isaiah tells the people of Israel that God is ready to provide all they need at no cost. God does not demand that we pay for what he has given to us because we cannot afford it. If we know how much those who are sick in the hospital pay to breath for an hour, we will understand that God provides our basic needs at no cost.
St Paul in the second reading tells us that some situations in life can make us feel as if God does not care about us, but nothing can separate us from the love of God. Even if we are troubled or worried, or being persecuted, or lacking food or clothes, or being threatened or even attacked, it does not mean that God has forsaken us. He still loves and cares for us.
In the gospel reading, the love of God becomes very practical in Jesus. He was just informed that Herod had killed John the Baptist, he went to a lonely place to be alone and mourn.
The people not sensitive to what Jesus was passing through, came from various parts of the towns and villages to be cured of their illnesses and diseases. When he had preached to them and cured them, he knew that they also needed physical food even if they did not ask for it. It teaches us therefore that God knows what we need, even when we do not ask.
It is a call on us us today, to be sensitive to the needs of one another. We know many people around us who need help, though they may not ask. Situations around many people may make them think that God has forsaken them. Many people just need a good charitable gesture to rekindle their faith and hope. Let us always trust God for all we need. He will provide for us at the right time. God help us. Amen.
Fr Michael Osatofoh Eninlejie MSP