Where’s our focus, on what we are experiencing in the here and now, or on what we expect in our life after death? What are the consequences of this decision? All three readings for the 26th Sunday in Ordinary Time remind us of these.
Our reality is the life we are living each and every day, not on life after death. It is far easier to contemplate our lived experiences, as opposed to what is to come.
The first reading describes the consequences of focusing on the former, “Woe to the complacent in Zion!”; and the gospel on the rich man who dies, “and from the netherworld, where he was in torment”. Conversely the second reading with its focus on the latter describes “immortality” and “unapproachable light.”
The gospel also reminds us not to expect some extraordinary personal experience to help us in making this decision, “If they will not listen to Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded if someone should rise from the dead”. But we need to remember that help is available if only we ask. Help in the form of the grace of God. Let’s keep this in mind in our daily prayers.