HIDDEN VALLEY: THE THIRD SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST
The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light. But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness! No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they? Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature? And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. (KJV)
We are blessed to have the Holy Gospel before us today, The Gospel reading is to be carefully considered for the benefit of our souls and our salvation. The Gospel enriches, guides and nourishes our hearts, minds and souls
The Lord God’s ways, teachings and commandments form the vision we are to utilize in daily life. Our eyes are to look at life in God-pleasing ways. God provides through the Church the vision to live and experience fulness in life.
The interpretation and understanding of life are to be as God would have us to understand and interpret. To be pure in our outlook at life, God must be at the center of our hearts, minds and souls.
Elements of darkness, sin and despair have no place in the hearts of God-loving and believing Christians. Love for God and love for each other are expected to dominate and be the basis of daily life.
Today’s Gospel guides believers toward the Kingdom of God as being foremost in life. Trust in God is expected and encouraged. The Holy Gospel
assures believers of God providing the essential needs of life.
Each believer determines the degree of personal faith in God being exercised. Every moment of every day is an opportunity to place faith in the good, loving and merciful God.
The proof of the value of faith is in the daily living with faith. The Christian life requires the believer’s active participation from the time of Holy Baptism until departure from this life.
Believers regularly fall down in the Christian life. Believers fail and fall into sin many times beyond measure. Being able to repent and begin anew in Jesus Christ is due to our wonderful Lord’s mercy, love and goodness.
God’s Holy Church offers nourishment, guidance and the opportunity for confession and renewal through communion. Receiving the Precious Body and Blood unites the repentant believer and restores wholeness in Jesus Christ.
The Church exists through the centuries until Christ’s Second Coming. Participation in the life of the Church is purely voluntary. We learn and experience the value of the Church through active investment, effort and participation.
Living in the Church in Christ extends throughout life. Living the life in the Church in Christ involves every moment of life. Every moment is an opportunity to pray and be united with Christ. Every moment is an opportunity to repent.
The hunger in the soul is only thoroughly satisfied and nourished in Christ. Alternative attempts to nourish the soul outside the Church and without Christ
lack authenticity and fail to satisfy.
The Lord God deserves constant love and gratitude. God provides for us in ways we never contemplate. God loves each and every person beyond measure. Today’s Gospel carries a most powerful message for attentive believers.
The mind God gives to each person is to be used in ways pleasing to God. Sinful, negative and dark thoughts are to be expelled whenever they enter the mind. Love of God, God’s goodness, mercy and love are to guide the believer.
The sun witnesses to the presence of God. The earth witnesses to the presence of God. Air and water are evidence of God’s presence. Believers are reminded of God being everywhere at every moment of life.
The mind is challenged to exercise strong and good faith in the living, loving, good and merciful God. God’s Holy Church guides the believer from birth to God’s Kingdom and eternal life.
Be grateful to God today and every moment of the day. Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness as described in the present Gospel. Enjoy the richness of the life in Christ.
Repent continuously in life. Draw strength and hope from the Lord. Make the home a small and living church as an extension and integral part of God’s Holy Church. Live in Christ as much as possible throughout life.
The Third Sunday after Pentecost. Holy Hieromartyr Methodius. Bishop of Patar;
Venerable Nahum of Ohrid, June 20/July 3, 2022.
Hidden Valley, Pennsylvania.
Father Rodney Torbic