The Passover of the Jews was near, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. In the temple he found people selling cattle, sheep, and doves, and the money changers seated at their tables. Making a whip of cords, he drove all of them out of the temple, both the sheep and the cattle. He also poured out the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables. He told those who were selling the doves, “Take these things out of here! Stop making my Father’s house a marketplace!”
His disciples remembered that it was written, “Zeal for your house will consume me.” The Jews then said to him, “What sign can you show us for doing this?” Jesus answered them, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” The Jews then said, “This temple has been under construction for forty-six years, and will you raise it up in three days?” But he was speaking of the temple of his body.
After he was raised from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this; and they believed the scripture and the word that Jesus had spoken.
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved. http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translations
Zeal for God’s house is not about defending bricks and mortar. It is about celebrating sacred space in our lives. We celebrate the establishment of a building today because it took centuries for Christians to be able to worship God in public.
We need space in our lives whose only purpose is to praise God – physical space and mental space. In cities defined by skyscrapers and sports stadiums, it is important that we set aside places where we come not to celebrate human achievement or to make money, but to join our voices together in prayer. Likewise, in our own hearts and minds, if we do not drive out intellectual distractions and various desires that impinge upon our spiritual well-being, we will not have any place left in ourselves to worship God.
Where are the spaces in your life that have no purpose other than the celebration of God?
—Fr. Paul Lickteig, S.J. serves as parochial vicar at St. Xavier Church, Cincinnati OH.
Lord, Grant that I may see thee more clearly, love thee more dearly, follow thee more nearly.”
—”Prayer for What I Want,” from Hearts on Fire, ed. Michael Harter, S.J., © Institute of Jesuit Sources, 2004.Please share the Good Word with your friends!