4th Sunday of Advent Year A - 29/1/2023 - Gospel: Mt 5:1-12
Road Map
People can make choices in life by choosing the earthly value, the heavenly one or the combination of the two sets of values. They co-exist within a person because both are innate values. The earthly values belong to our physical body, which we first originate from. The Creation story tells us God made us out of dust and from dust we return. The earthly shape had no life yet. Life began when God breathed into the figure's nostrils and gave it life. The breath of God is the life that is given to us and we have life. The two sets of values are not mixed, and try to influence each other. We are the arbiter to conduct our life. When we choose to follow the way of the world; we conduct our lives in a worldly way; when we follow the Beatitudes, we follow God's way, and our lives will be transformed to be more like God. The Beatitudes mention nothing about the pass, but talk about present and future which indicates that God gives us a new start. The Beatitudes help us to do the transformation by giving us the road map, that throughout his life Jesus preached and practiced the Beatitudes. We, His followers, hope to follow in His footstep. The Beatitudes is the way of life that leads to life and eternal life, and the road map Jesus walked would help us to achieve such blessed. In order to follow Jesus, we need to be pro-life, support life, and even re-create life. Through Jesus' road map, we learn from God to make things alive and active. God gave life to the soil figure at the creation, and God gives us the power to share that life- giving by re-creation. When we follow the Beatitudes, deadly things such as destitution, mourning, discomfort, impure heart, persecution, and war, will be transformed to be life-giving. We can't do it on our own but with God's grace, we can transform them to be sources of life-giving.

We may be poor in material but rich in spirituality; we may mourn now, but never lose hope in God, and look beyond our present situation. When we turn toward God, God will change our heart, from the heart of stone; to the heart of flesh. When we work for peace and justice that will eradicate persecution and war. When we live according to God's way of life we are blessed because God fills our hearts with God's love.

Blessedness doesn't depend on world material, but on God's love. When our hearts open to receive God's grace, we are satisfied and that gives meaning to our lives. The Beatitudes seem to remind us that those who exercise their power unjustly feel they are fortunate at the present, but it won't last long; while their victims who suffer now for the just cause, 'shall rejoice and be glad' forever in God's kingdom.

Our physical bodies are made of world materials. The Beatitudes remind us that the world doesn't make us, but only gives support and feeds our physical body. We live in the world, but don't belong to the world. There is no need to accumulate wealth because we are unable to keep them forever. We are called to do the incredible, and that is to change perishable values into unperishable ones.

The Beatitudes call us to be light, and salt for the world by means of sharing within our capacity the world resources in our hands to others. This sharing will ease the burden of life. It will make them feel that they are fortunate to know you. And you in turn feel fortunate when you make God's name known to others. By sharing, one learns to be ready to live in God's kingdom on earth. When we actually get there, the new life will no more be foreign to us, and we fit well into the new life God has prepared for those who follow God's way. We learn to love not the earthly richness, but the heavenly one and that is another blessed.