Year A: 27th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Second Reading: Philippians 4: 6-9
St Paul offers the Philippians a clear and simple way for living - filling their minds and hearts with all that is true, noble, good, pure - everything that is worthy of honour and praise.
It is sound advice.
If our minds, hearts and spirits are filled with that which is life-giving and true - then there is less room for that which is destructive and damaging.
St Paul is not suggesting that this is easy - human nature is often overwhelmed by sadness and depression - but offering this as something we can cultivate.
The attitude he describes is not naively optimistic - but a powerful disposition of mind and heart. It is not pretending that all the negatives donít exist - but, as far as possible, not giving them space to take root.
So, we know that evil and impurity exist - but choose to set our own sights on what is good and wholesome. We see hatred and brutality - but choose ourselves, to love and to treat others with honour and courtesy. We hear lies - but choose truth - and so on.
It takes practice! In fact, it takes a lifetime - but, as we make the search for these qualities a habit, we become increasingly aware that God is on our side. God protects us - guarding our minds and hearts from the things that would damage them. We feel the presence of God and His peace within us.
St Paul suggests that the Philippians could follow his own example. He knows the powerful influence of someoneís good example - someone who shows that it really is possible to live in this way.
What does it mean for me?
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