HOMILY FOR THE 2ND SUNDAY OF LENT YR B (28/02/2021)
THEME: GOD’S TEST AND YOUR TESTIMONY
The WORD of GOD this 2nd Sunday of Lent Year B makes us to understand that we can’t have a TESTIMONY without a TEST.
TEST AND TESTIMONY
The word test can be understood as either a trial or a challenge. Better put, it’s a session in which a product or piece of equipment is examined under everyday or extreme conditions to evaluate its durability, etc. Testimony on the otherhand is the solemn attestation to the truth of a matter. And this is only possible, when you’ve first hand information. It’s more of a personal experience. To have a TESTIMONY, you must have passed through an extreme condition or conditions, then you’ll be able to share your experience with others.
In the first reading of today Abraham was put to the greatest test of his life. God asked him to sacrifice Isaac. He was to take him to Mount Moriah. Recall that Abraham waited for so many years to have this child, his only son who was to carry on the family legacy. The Scripture even stresses the feelings that Abraham had for Isaac: Your only son Isaac, whom you love so much. This was where Abraham’s heart was and this was Abraham’s test. Our Isaacs too are where our hearts are (cf. Mt. 6:21). Everything that we hold so dear, so precious, our treasures; that is our Isaac and that too is where our test will come from. Your test cannot come from anything that does not appeal to you. The Lenten call for repentance, fasting, and abstinence relates to giving up our Isaac. God is inviting us this season to give up the numerous Isaacs in our lives. What is your Isaac?
Your Isaac could be those actions and thoughts that have become so habitual to you that you seem to be helpless and hopeless without them. It could be a person or thing to whom you have this attachment that is threatening your relationship with God. It could be a place you like to visit that stops your visit to God; it could be anything that stands in opposition to your spiritual moral, and even psychological well-being. You must take a decision to let go of your Isaac to be able to climb to the mountain where the glory of God will be made manifest.
Often, we think that when we give up our Isaac, life will become tasteless and bitter. Sometimes we believe that our Isaac determines our future and without our Isaac, we shall become nothing. That is false!
Life is all about our decision. In the case of Abraham, he made up his mind to sacrifice his Isaac, and he was not joking about it because he made all the physical arrangement for a holocaust (burnt sacrifice) to God, represented by the altar, wood, fire, and knife. He did not know that the test was heading to testimony, but he believed in the one who gave the instructions; faith does not ask how? He had to let go, and God provided; he gave up his Isaac with faith, and God gave him back his Isaac with a blessing. He passed through the test and received the testimony!
In the Gospel of today, Peter, James, and John witnessed the glory of God on mount Tabor. The journey to the mountaintop is often not easy. They made up their minds to follow Jesus to the top. To make the necessary sacrifices. They left the crowd and their friends at the foot of the mountain and headed to the clouds at the top of the mountain. And so like Abraham having passed their test, they had their testimony: It’s wonderful for us to be here said Peter.
Today, we must ask ourselves an important question: what is my Isaac? What is that which I love so much that will distract me on my way to the mountaintop where I will behold God’s glory. As a man, is’t your side-chick, is’t your cigarette, your drunken habit. You must let go of that Isaac in your life to have a testimony. At the beginning it may be difficult but know that this journey is leading you to a glorious end. The journey might be rough, do not be discouraged it will lead us to a magnificent encounter and like Peter, we would say, “it is wonderful for us to be here.”
Dearest, this is the voice of the Beloved Son of God, do listen and you have a testimony!
Peace be with you!