Grace to you!
Reverence for the things of God shows in many ways. If you are a Catholic, you don’t need to travel far to observe it. Simply visit a church and stay in the back of the pews in a church where the Blessed Sacrament is (reposed).
Observe how people walk in and out of the church. You could tell who is reverent and who isn’t.
Another example, observe priests celebrate Mass. Before long you could tell who is reverent and who is behaving as if performing a duty he isn’t passionate about.
Piety is that virtue that expresses reverence and deep devotion for the things of God. You see it as people come to church, receive communion or handle things related to worship. You could tell it by how people keep their bible or handle sacred books.
Some may say it doesn’t matter how I treat things related to God. It doesn’t matter how I behave during Liturgy (worship). Some may say what is important is to have faith and be a good person. They forget that the level of our faith and commitment to God shows in the way we revere things related to God.
For instance, if you truly believe in Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament, I suppose, it will shape the way you treat the Eucharist?
On our anthropological (human) level, if you believe in the sacredness of life, won’t it inform your decisions regarding life, from conception to natural death? If you believe that every person is created in the image and likeness of God, won't it manifest in reverence for the human person irrespective of their race, sex or religion? Our reverence in worship overflows to reverence on the streets and at homes.
May I give you an example from a story cast over 2200 years ago. It was about King Belshazzar who was the successor of King Nebuchadnezzar. He was so irreverent that he brought in the sacred cups and vessels used in the Jerusalem temple for worship and used them for his own party in his palace. By so doing, he blurred the line between the sacred and the worldly. He showed irreverence of the highest order.
We read from the story that suddenly the “finger of a human hand appeared and wrote on the plaster of the wall in the palace of the king.” The writing declared the end of the reign of the king. Daniel, the reverent one, was the interpreter of the message.
We are not to blur the line between what is sacred and our worldly concerns. Holy piety is a wonderful virtue. God and the things of God deserve our utmost reverence.
We learn from this story how not to be irreverent. Glorify God, honor and acknowledge Him, and “He will direct your paths” (Prov. 3:6)
God love you. God bless you.
Fr. Maurice Emelu
[Wednesday Week 34 A: Dn 5:1-6, 13-14, 16-17, 23-28; Lk 21:12-19]
Fr. Maurice Emelu, Ph.D.
Father Maurice provides a daily blog of reflections based on Scriptural readings of the day from the Catholic liturgical calendar. You will find these reflections helpful for your spiritual growth, inspiration and developing your own thoughts. It may also be helpful for ministers in preparing their sermons for liturgical celebrations.