The Eighth Sunday of the Year Is 49:14-15; 1 Cor 4:1-5; Mt 6:24-34 (year a)

 ‘Does a woman forget her baby at the breast, or fail to cherish the son of her womb? Yet even if these forget, I shall never forget you.”

The prophet Isaiah described the relationship between God and his people in terms of unparalleled tenderness. He was responding to that sense of abandonment and isolation that so easily overwhelms the vulnerability of our human condition. For those addressed by the prophet Isaiah, that sense of isolation was the consequence of violent upheaval.

At times, we experience a similar darkness in the misfortunes of daily life. It is an isolation that feels far from the love of God, that even begins to question whether we are worthy of his love.

The prophet Isaiah dismissed such fears. God embraces our fragility with a spontaneity that reaches beyond our imagining, beyond the love of a mother for her newborn child.

The life, death and resurrection of Jesus were the definitive confirmation of the Father’s love. Thus his instructions, set before us in the Sermon on the Mount, concluded with the reaffirmation of the Father’s unchanging love: “That is why I am telling you not to worry about your life and what you are to eat, nor about your body and how you are to clothe it. Look at the birds of the sky. They do not sow or reap or gather into barns, yet your heavenly Father feeds them all. Are you not worth more than they are?”

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