Who is it today that you’re finding it difficult to love? Is it someone at home, on the job, in the neighborhood, at church, in the public spotlight? Whoever it may be, today’s gospel challenges us to make the intentional effort- to go the extra mile- to love that person.
As we heard, a scribe asked Jesus what he thought was the first of all the commandments. But Jesus didn’t just give him the first, which is the commandment to love God above all else. Jesus gave him the second as well, which is the commandment to love our neighbor as ourselves. Jesus did this because we cannot love God if we don’t love our neighbor.
But just how are we to love? What are we supposed to do? St. Thomas Aquinas said, “Love is wanting what is best for a person and doing what you reasonably can to bring goodness and good things to that person.”
Applying this to the person we’re finding it difficult to love will take different forms, depending on the circumstances. We may need to exercise patience, swallow our pride, offer forgiveness, be intentionally kind, give them some type of help, or make amends for something hurtful we may have done to them.
But regardless of what we might need to do to these difficult people, love them we must, if we wish to be people who truly love God.
Readings for today’s Mass: http://www.usccb.org/nab/040111.shtml