Our Lord invites us in today’s Gospel to seek the deeper signs of our world, good and bad, and act on them. When he uses the example of rain or hot weather he is chiding us for focusing on things that are often fleeting and superficial–a weather report is almost obsolete as soon as it’s presented–but he is also encouraging us to see that we can perceive greater and more important trends in our lives and in our culture, good trends (like rain for good crops) and bad (like hot weather that withers and dries up crops), and do something about them.
In the First Reading St. Paul describes signs of a battle being waged in each of us: a battle between doing what we know to be right and overcoming that tendency in us to do what is evil, even when we know it to be wrong. Paul invokes Our Lord as the only force able to help break this interior stalemate. We can feel stormy moments and we can feel the heat of our actions, but we know Our Lord will help us to overcome them. At the same time Our Lord in today’s Gospel reminds us that we have to be proactive: we can’t put off reconciling with him or with others unless we want to face justice after squandering many opportunities to come to terms.
Our Lord tells us today that the signs are there if we want to look. Let’s ask him to help us recognize them and act on them for the good.
Readings: Romans 7:18–25a; Psalm 119:66, 68, 76–77, 93–94; Luke 12:54–59.