Read Ruth 1:1,3-6,14-16,22, Ps. 146:5-10, Matthew 22:34-40

“But Ruth said, ‘Entreat me not to leave you or to return from following you; for where you go I will go, and where you lodge I will lodge; your people shall be my people, and your God my God; where you die I will die, and there will I be buried.’” (Ruth 1:16-17)

The love of God is the summary of all the commandments. To love God is to value God from the depths of your heart. At the heart of Christian worship is love. To love is to worship. In other words, if we love God, we would truly worship him by keeping every one of his commandments. To love God is to sacrifice your will to do the will of God.

Take away love, and our worship of God loses its value. This was why Jesus asked Peter the same question three times. “Do you love me?” “Peter, do you love me more than these?” “Peter, do you love me?” How can we claim to be serving God if we love other things more than God?

The first and greatest commandment is also intricately connected to the second commandment: “You shall love your neighbour as yourself.” Of course, as St. John says: “If anyone says, ‘I love God,’ and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen.” (1 John 4:20).

The Story of Ruth and Naomi in the Bible is a story of Love. Ruth refused to leave Naomi, her mother-in-law because she was wise enough to know that Naomi, an aged woman, could not survive without help. Here comes another lesson in love: the care for the old.

Love is empty if it doesn’t require anything from you. True love requires sacrificing for others, especially for the old. Just as loving God demands our wholehearted worship, loving our neighbours also demands sacrifice on our part.

Let us pray: Almighty, ever-living God, help me love you better each day. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Be Happy. Live Positive. Have Faith. It is well with you. God bless you. (Friday of week 20 in Ordinary Time. Bible Study: Ruth 1:1,3-6,14-16,22, Ps. 146:5-10, Matthew 22:34-40).

@Rev. Fr. Evaristus E. Abu