Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Solemnity of Christ the King of the Universe Year B

Readings: Daniel 7:13-14; Revelation 1:5-8; John 18:33-37

A victorious king on the Cross sums up best the message of this Sunday, the solemnity of Jesus Christ the King of the Universe. But first a humorous story. A priest was once giving a homily and as he went on, he became more animated. While making a sweeping gesture, he knocked down his papers from the pulpit. Scrambling to pick them up, he asked, "Now, where was I?" A voice from the congregation responded, "Right near the end!" Well, we are near the end - not of my homily (smile), but of the liturgical year. On this final Sunday we celebrate the victory of Jesus Christ the King of the Universe. We acknowledge Jesus as Lord and King of our lives.  Today the readings invite us to ask some searching questions about our loyalty as disciples and stewards. Who is my king? What king do I serve?

The Gospel presents one of the most dramatic scenes in the New Testament. When asked by Pilate if he is a king, Jesus calmly responds, “My kingdom does not belong to this world.”  So where is this kingdom? Where is Jesus Christ the King? There is a story about a little girl who was standing with her grandfather by an old open well. They had just lowered a bucket and had drawn some water to drink. She asked her grandfather: “Lolo (Grandfather), where does God live?” the old man picked up the little girl and held her over the open well. “Look down there in the water,” he said, “and tell me what you see.” ‘I see myself,” said the little girl. ‘That’s where God lives,” said the old man, “He lives in you.” Simple down to earth catechism, but it is true. “The kingdom of God is within you” (Lk 17:21). In the Gospel Jesus shows that his kingship is one that witnesses to the truth - the truth about God and humanity. Jesus defends that truth with his own blood on the Cross. Accepting such truth leads to true freedom. What king do I serve? Am I ready to let go and let Jesus invade my life? There is a story of a doctor who gave his patient six months to live. Since the patient could not pay his bill, the doctor gave him another six months to live. We are just like that doctor. We tend to postpone our full allegiance to Christ the King because God is not our top priority in our lives. We seem to have other ‘kings’ whom we serve.  The enemy within has a grip on us for pleasure that we confuse with happiness. We are not ready to let go our “gods” and “kings” until terror strikes! Are you ready to let go? So what message do we take home? 1) Jesus Christ is a King who conquers sin and death on the Cross and resurrection. From the Cross, Jesus gives himself to us, serves and cares for all, particularly the less fortunate. 2) We are challenged to let go and let Jesus transform us into his own image; to make us be the best version of ourselves. 3) Being a member of Christ’s kingdom means being ready to fight and defend the values for which Jesus died; it means letting Christ rule my life and my family. Are you ready to let go and let Jesus take the driver seat?

©2015 John S. Mbinda

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