First Reading: 1Kgs 17:7-16; Psalm: 4. R. 7b; Gospel: Mt 5:13-16v
BE THE SALT AND LIGHT OF THE WORLD
BY FR VALENTINE NNAMDI EGBUONU, MSP
Salt took up a ‘taste challenge’ with sugar to prove who was sweeter in the kitchen. The judge was the tongue. After tasting a pinch of each, the tongue announced that sugar was sweet and that salt was sour. Minutes later, the tongue tasted a meal in two separate dishes. One was salted and the other was sugared. Swaying in pleasure having tasted the salted meal, the tongue exclaimed “Wow! I think I was wrong. Now I know that salt is sweeter than sugar.” Salt won the challenge.
A meal without salt is insipid. No matter how appetising it looks, once it is not salted, it becomes so bland and unadventurous. Likewise, light is important to the eye as salt is important for tastiness. The reflection of light to the eyes is what makes seeing possible. A simple experiment would explain better. At night, when we switch off the light in a room, we will suddenly discover how seeing becomes impossible. With these two images (salt and light), Jesus illustrated how important Christians are to the world. With the flavour of love and mercy, we can light up the path of unbelievers to have a change of heart.
We saw how the widow of Zarephath radiated love and mercy by that kind gesture of offering a cup of water and a morsel of bread to the prophet Elijah. This brought relief to the ravenous prophet. It is important to be conscious that it was God who used this indigent widow to feed his prophet. This widow could have said no if she so decided. But she yielded to the grace of God appealing to her. Do we respond to that appeal of the Spirit calling us to be salt and light to the world? Do we animate that feeling to love that often knocks at the door of our hearts? Just like salt and light, we are only useful when we add value or make impact in the life of people. Our saltiness as Christians is love and mercy. We become light to the world by animating them.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY
Lord Jesus, help us to become true salt and light to our darkened world. Amen.