Friday, April 1, 2011

Lent, Day 21

We went to Mass this morning, and the Gospel reading was Mark 12:28-34.
28 One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”

29 “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.  There is no commandment greater than these.

32 “Well said, teacher,” the man replied. “You are right in saying that God is one and there is no other but him. 33 To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.”

34 When Jesus saw that he had answered wisely, he said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” And from then on no one dared ask him any more questions.

The rules are pretty simple, aren't they?   I often wonder how it is that other things find a way of crowding into my brain and pushing God to the back.

I also have to be very careful not to pat myself on the back for good deeds and loving my neighbor.   It would be nice if at the end of my life all the people who have known me  had special memories that nobody else knows.  I want my first thoughts to be "What can I do to help?"   I'd hate to become one of the people who looks for accolades, or keeps a score card.