In the first reading today from 1 Maccabees 4, we read about the origins of Hanukkah. Do you know what that Jewish feast, celebrated to this day, is all about? Read and find out! In the Gospel reading from Luke 19, we see Jesus throwing the merchants out of the temple area. The big shots wanted to have him killed, “but they could find no way to accomplish their purpose because all the people were hanging on his words.”
I love that turn of phrase, “hanging on his words.” As a speaker, I can tell you that that is every speaker’s goal; to have your listeners hanging on your every word. It means that they are paying rapt attention. That your message is getting through. So I have to ask myself…are weÂ hanging on Jesus’ words? I think that begs a prequel question: Do we even KNOW Jesus’ words? Are we familiar enough with His words to hang on them?
If you think this is going to turn into an exhortation to read the Scriptures, you’re right! If you think I’m going to encourage you to go to Mass more or listen more attentively at Mass, you’re right! If you think I’m going to implore you to deepen your prayer life, you’re right! These are just some of the ways that we can be more open to hearing and knowing Jesus. And hopefully when we do these things, we, too, will hang on His every word.
Father, teach us to listen more attentively to Jesus’ words. May we hear, hang and obey each and every day. Amen.