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Salt and Light for the World

  • June 7, 2022 (readings)
  • Tuesday of the Tenth Week in Ordinary Time
  • Carey Boyzuck
  • Matthew 5:13-16

    Jesus said to his disciples: “You are the salt of the earth. But if salt loses its taste, with what can it be seasoned? It is no longer good for anything but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot. You are the light of the world. A city set on a mountain cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and then put it under a bushel basket; it is set on a lampstand, where it gives light to all in the house. Just so, your light must shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your heavenly Father.”

    Opening Prayer: Dear Jesus, help me to hear your words and understand them. Plant your word deep in my heart so that I bear good fruits of truth, goodness, and beauty in my walk as your disciple. May I always give glory to you and not myself.

    Encountering Christ:

    1. Discipleship Manual: This Gospel passage is from the Sermon on the Mount. We will hear from the Sermon on the Mount for the rest of the week. In this famous sermon, Jesus appeared as a new Moses who gave a deeper meaning of God’s law to his disciples. He taught about the disposition of the heart and the new level of morality that he expects from his followers. These were formation lessons for his disciples. During the Gospel readings this week, listen closely for Jesus’ instructions for discipleship and how to live a truly Christian life. We could think of it as a discipleship manual. 

    2. Salt to Bring Out the Best: Part of the role of a Christian disciple is to make the world a better place for others. The places where we live and work should be more peaceful and happy as a result of the good fruits of virtue that we bring with us. Salt is a seasoning that brings out the distinct flavors of foods. As Christ’s disciples, we can strive to help bring out the best in others. We can ask ourselves if we set a good example by being cheerful, trustworthy, helpful, and kind. When we seek to live a life of virtue and gently encourage others to do likewise, we live out our call to be the salt of the earth.

    3. Light to Shine for Christ: Being the salt of the earth helps to bring out the best in others. To be the light of the world means to shine Christ’s light to all through works of mercy and love. This shining light is not our own, but borrowed from Christ, the light of the world (John 8:12). It is the Holy Spirit’s fire burning inside us, illuminating the world around us with God’s truth, goodness, and beauty. Do we bring the light of Christ to others by speaking with truth and charity? Are we cheerful in service, therefore bringing the light of Christ’s joy to all situations? It is helpful to remember that our light and joy does not come from our own inner stores, but shines forth from Christ who dwells in us. It is his light, not our own, that radiates to others (see Galatians 2:20).

    Conversing with Christ: Lord Jesus, I praise and thank you for your teaching. It encourages me to serve you with my whole heart. I am sorry for the times when I have failed through my sins and have allowed my salt to be “trampled underfoot” and my light to be put “under a bushel basket.” Please fill me with the joyful purpose of being your salt and light for the people in my life.

    Resolution: Lord today by your grace, I will pay attention to the times when you are calling me to be your salt by bringing out the best in others and when you are calling me to be your light by bearing your truth, goodness, and beauty to different situations.

    For Further Reflection: Read this article by Dr. Edward Sri, The Radical Call of the Sermon on the Mount, from the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology.


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