Some people are afflicted by a condition known appropriately enough as S.A.D., or seasonal affective disorder in which a lack of light, caused by the shorter days of winter, influences the mood and emotions or, in more severe cases, even the ability to function. It’s amazing how important light is to our well being. In this we are not unlike the rest of creation. Here’s some good news though: daylight is increasing every day since the darkest day of December!
As I look at the world today, I can’t help but think that a type of S.A.D. plagues it as well. There is a tremendous amount of darkness leading to dysfunctional actions.
On the international front wars continue or worsen in many areas. There are the almost daily suicide bombings in Iraq. The situation in many African nations between various tribes and Islam extremists goes on and on. The Middle East remains a hot bed of tensions and conflicting demands and rights especially in Syria and Israel. Natural disasters have also taken their toll.
It has been observed that while our economy is recovering slowly, the gap between rich and poor continues to grow while the middle is shrinking, “the rich get richer and the poor get poorer” adage in action. And to top it all, many want the little that the poor have taken away even as corporate welfare increases and tax breaks are given to attract business.
In our state, we’ve experienced many shootings especially in our cities, drug use, car accidents—some of which have affected our teens—and endless debates about education and test scores.
Yes, there is a lot of darkness out there. Is there a solution? Jesus tells us: “You are the light of the world.” YOU. Isaiah reveals to us that we can make light break forth like the dawn and that light shall rise for us in the darkness with gloom becoming like midday. How? If you:
- Share your bread with the hungry.
- Shelter the oppressed and the homeless.
- Clothe the naked.
- Do not turn your back on your own.
- Remove oppression, false accusation and malicious speech.
- Bestow bread on the hungry.
- Satifsy the afflicted.
Obviously for God, faith and religion are not just directed to God alone. They must be also driven by a response to human need. So, which do you prefer: Darkness? Or light? What will you do to make light break forth?
~Fr. Sas, February 9 Homily
5th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A