In the first reading today from 1 John 4, St. John writes yet again about love. “Everyone who loves is begotten by God and knows God…In this is love: not that we have loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as expiation for our sins.” In our Gospel passage from Mark 6, we see Jesus feeding five thousand with just five loaves and two fish.
“I love you.” Those three little words that we all long to hear, right? But is it enough to just hear those words, or to say those words? I would submit to you that the answer is an unequivocal “NO!” Don’t get me wrong. Words are important. We need to tell those that we love that we love them. Many a person has had deep regrets because they failed to say those words. But if those words are just words, they carry little meaning. If those words are not backed up with action, they ring hollow.
Take a close look at today’s readings. God loves us so much that He sent His Son as expiation for our sins. Love followed by action. He could have just written on some stone tablets “I love you,” and then left us to our own devices. But would that have been real love? Look at Jesus in today’s Gospel. He loved the people so much that he wanted to feed them all. He could easily have said, “I love you all. Now go find something to eat.” But He didn’t. He put His love into action. Can we do any less?
Father, thank you for putting your love into action. Give us the grace to not be people of empty words, but people whose love is put into action. Amen.