This week marks the end of Year A in the three year Lectionary cycle. Of course, as usual, the year ends with an encounter with Christ as King, and each year gives us a different, surprising view of Christ’s reign.
Who—or what—has authority over you in your daily activities? How might we live if we trusted that Christ did indeed have the only authority that mattered?
Ezekiel 34.11-16, 20-24, Ephesians 1.15-23, and Matthew 25.31–46 are all passages that speak to the importance of compassion and care for others. These passages remind us that we are called to love and serve our neighbours, especially those who are vulnerable and in need.
In Ezekiel 34.11-16, 20-24, God is portrayed as a shepherd who cares for his flock, seeking out the lost and injured sheep and rescuing them from danger. Similarly, in Matthew 25.31–46, Jesus identifies himself with the hungry, thirsty, stranger, naked, sick, and imprisoned, and rewards those who have shown compassion to them. These passages call us to care for the most vulnerable members of our society, to seek out those who are lost and hurting, and to show them the love and compassion of Christ.
In Ephesians 1.15-23, Paul prays that the eyes of our hearts may be enlightened so that we may know the hope to which we are called. This hope is grounded in the power of God, who raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms. As followers of Christ, we are called to live in the light of this hope, to be agents of God’s love and compassion in the world, and to work for justice and peace.