Today’s Gospel shows us three different types of struggles people have when following Jesus, or when “imitating” Jesus.
We all want to imitate Jesus but there are often things which get in the way.
Firstly, we encounter a very keen man. A man full of zeal but perhaps he is acting more out of what he feels. We are reminded of Peter, before he denies Christ, saying he will die for Him. Jesus explains that discipleship is not easy, and that He wants us to imitate Him also when we struggle, when we are unsure, when we don’t feel God’s presence.
Secondly, we encounter a man who wants to imitate Jesus, but he is just not ready yet. He wants to wait a while and then he will do it. Jesus tells Him the time to spread the Gospel is now. Why would you wait to share Good News.
Thirdly, there is a man who seems to have already begun to imitate Christ, but wants some time out. He seems to suggest that he will come back in the future. Jesus says that discipleship is for each and every day, and each and every situation.
Today’s saint St Therese of Lisieux showed us what is of fundamental importance in following Jesus – that is to love. Love is the root.
She longed to be a martyr and to be on the missions, but God willed for her to remain in a convent. She then understood that we are all called to different things by God, but that Christians are all called to the same thing – that is to love.
May the Blessed Virgin Mary help us to follow Jesus by loving one another, as Jesus Himself loved us.