First Reading: Exodus 19:1-2, 9-11, 16-20
On the third new moon after the people of Israel had gone forth out of the land of Egypt, on that day they came into the wilderness of Sinai. And when they set out from Reph’idim and came into the wilderness of Sinai, they encamped in the wilderness; and there Israel encamped before the mountain. And the LORD said to Moses, “Lo, I am coming to you in a thick cloud, that the people may hear when I speak with you, and may also believe you for ever.” Then Moses told the words of the people to the LORD. And the LORD said to Moses, “Go to the people and consecrate them today and tomorrow, and let them wash their garments, and be ready by the third day; for on the third day the LORD will come down upon Mount Sinai in the sight of all the people. On the morning of the third day there were thunders and lightnings, and a thick cloud upon the mountain, and a very loud trumpet blast, so that all the people who were in the camp trembled. Then Moses brought the people out of the camp to meet God; and they took their stand at the foot of the mountain. And Mount Sinai was wrapped in smoke, because the LORD descended upon it in fire; and the smoke of it went up like the smoke of a kiln, and the whole mountain quaked greatly. And as the sound of the trumpet grew louder and louder, Moses spoke, and God answered him in thunder. And the LORD came down upon Mount Sinai, to the top of the mountain; and the LORD called Moses to the top of the mountain, and Moses went up.
Responsorial Psalm: Daniel 3:52-56
Blessed are you, O Lord, the God of our fathers, praiseworthy and exalted above all forever; And blessed is your holy and glorious name, praiseworthy and exalted above all for all ages. Blessed are you in the temple of your holy glory, praiseworthy and glorious above all forever. Blessed are you on the throne of your kingdom, praiseworthy and exalted above all forever. Blessed are you who look into the depths from your throne upon the cherubim, praiseworthy and exalted above all forever. Blessed are you in the firmament of heaven, praiseworthy and glorious forever.
Gospel: Matthew 13:10-17
Then the disciples came and said to him, “Why do you speak to them in parables?” And he answered them, “To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given. For to him who has will more be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who has not, even what he has will be taken away. This is why I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand. With them indeed is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah which says: `You shall indeed hear but never understand, and you shall indeed see but never perceive. For this people’s heart has grown dull, and their ears are heavy of hearing, and their eyes they have closed, lest they should perceive with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and turn for me to heal them.’ But blessed are your eyes, for they see, and your ears, for they hear. Truly, I say to you, many prophets and righteous men longed to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it.
How often do you find yourself stuck in the monotony of day-in and day-out life? You know, just the same ol’ same ol’. I know I often find myself in a never ending cycle of laundry and wiping up bite-sized pieces of grapes from the floor. The drudgery becomes a vicious vacuum that envelops my whole being.
For you, it might be a work, home, repeat cycle. Maybe it’s classes and exams that surround your every thought. Or maybe you’re just overwhelmed with how much life at its core is demanding from you today. It may seem that the nothingness is out of control; perhaps you can’t even figure out where God fits into the picture.
The Israelites could probably relate. Here they are after wandering around for three months, and finally God is coming to them. There in their literal desert, God comes to them, reassuring them of His presence. God comes to them right there in the middle of their doldrum life. A thick cloud of smoke and fire upon the mountain.
Sometimes I think it’s so easy to get caught up in just making it to the next meal, the next appointment, the next exam, that we get lost in that nothingness. And yet our God comes to us. In His word, He comes to us and speaks truth straight to our hearts. In our friends and family, He speaks love in action. And in His sacraments, He is physically there waiting to meet with us.
As Catholics we are oh-so-privileged to have the Eucharist, where God Himself has humbled Himself to become a tiny wafer of bread just to meet with us. With me. With you. Our God awaits us whether we spends a little time adoring the Blessed Sacrament, reading the Bible, or even rearrange our schedule to attend an extra Mass. And He is delighted when we come to Him.
Don’t forget how much you are loved and how much God wants to meet with you. That He is waiting just to meet with you, to extend a lifeline in the monotony of the everyday.
Think about how much God wants to meet with you and try to make time this week to meet with Him.
Sarah Ortiz is a Catholic convert, and when not folding laundry, she can be found reading, experimenting in the kitchen, or writing at her blog. You can find out more about her here.