“O God, who have commanded us to listen to your beloved Son”.
These words from the opening prayer for this Sunday grabbed my attention; there are many other recorded happenings in the readings. Abraham, for example, is engulfed with terrifying options and one cannot comprehend the emotions that must have wracked his mind, even if he did emerge from a culture that practised human sacrifice. His listening not only saved his son but certainly changed the culture of the coming chosen people who on many occasions stood out in their world. They did not practise human sacrifice.
The chosen three were urged again to “Listen to him.” They had heard that before. Perhaps like us, some messages take time to gel.
These past days have witnessed the inability to listen to what is being said, whether in the Victorian Parliament or the world of the AFL or, for that matter, even at Federal level.
To listen to one another can be very difficult. To listen to one another in marriage is considered essential by so many marriage counsellors (yet so often, the lack is the major cause of difficulties). The continual cry of those harassed in the workplace or victims of violence let alone those abused in sexual matters is a cry for someone to listen to their stories.
The Gospel asks us to listen to what the Beloved Son says and to observe what he does. Listening gets us eventually to the heart of the matter and helps us to arrive at the truth. Even after this episode the disciples were still failing to comprehend; not surprising, for they were being asked to take in the truth that Jesus was the Son of God! One could argue that that call was the most important call to the human race ever.
The way to acceptance suggested by the Father Himself was “To Listen.”
Perhaps the way to peace and harmony in our family, our Church and in our community, would be enhanced if we all learn to really listen to one another!