Sunday, August 17, 2008

God Excludes No One

In todays readings, there is a common theme of insiders and outsiders. In the first reading, Isaiah writes that foreigners who trust God, keep holy his commandments and the sabbath will be welcomed at God's alter. Those who have faith and do good works will be welcome in heaven.

God welcomes all to join him in heaven. There are no outsiders in God's eyes. When I hear the term foreigner, I think someone who is an outsider, but that is not how God sees it. It is us humans who like to place people in groups. The only group that we should be concerned about joining is the group that reaches heaven. Just because God does not see anyone as an outsider does not mean that all will be welcome in heaven. Rather, all have the opportunity to reach heaven. If we do not have faith or do good works, we can not expect to reach heaven.

Often we find in our daily lives that our faith is challenged. It is during these times that we must be strong and steadfast in our faith. It is an opportunity for us to evangelize. Sometimes what is right is not always what is popular. We may be looked on as outsiders by the mass population, but that must never deter us. We must always stay strong in our faith and follow the Church teachings. In the end, God will be the judge of what is right and good and those who obey his commands and keep the faith will be rewarded. God's "chosen people" are the insiders. These "chosen people" may be rich or poor, native or foreign, popular or unpopular. God invites us all and excludes no one. It is up to us to accept His invitation.

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