_"However, not to give offense to them, go to the sea and cast a hook, and take the first fish that comes up, and when you open its mouth you will find a shekel; take that and give it to them for me and for yourself.”(Matthew 17:27)_

_*One of the things that Jesus was accused of while on earth, is that He breaks the law and teaches others who are following Him to do the same thing. They noted that He was saying that he was God and as a result of that accused Him of blasphemy.*_

_The tax collectors spoke to Peter about the payment of tax from Jesus. They were looking for a way to accuse Him of disobeying the constituted authority. But Jesus not wanting to make any issue with them told Peter to go to the sea and get money from the mouth of the fish and pay the tax. You may wonder, how is this possible, but do not forget that with God all things are possible._

_*Jesus teaches us through his action to be responsible citizens as children of God. It is true that God's law is Supreme, but we are bound to respect the law made to govern the society also.*_

_Taxes are paid by citizens to help in the development of a country by the government. Taxes are collected by the government from the citizens and then put back into providing basic amenities and infrastructures that will contribute to the wellbeing of the people._

_*Jesus' action teaches us as Christians to be responsible citizens of the world. We must be subject to legitimate and constituted temporal authorities, but we have right to make a demand of them on accountability, when we have done our part by paying the tax and they fail to use the funds to provide what will benefit us as citizens.*_

_The society belongs to us, both the leaders and the led; and we are bound to make use of what we contribute to make it a better place where we shall live and prosper and where everyone will be properly taken care of. It will be evil to collect taxes from the poor masses and yet do so little or nothing with what is collected and people will continue to suffer and wallow in abject poverty._

_*In as much as the citizens are encouraged to be good by doing what is expected of them, the leaders are also citizens and are bound by the same law. Infact, by virtue of their office of service, they are to lead by example and try always to think of the good of the citizens and what they can do by using what is contributed to give them the best they could have. As good citizens we must play our part in the development of the places where we work, study, live and do our business. We must not disobey the law, but keep the law and work for the good of all.*_

_Good morning dearest one. Smile😊 as you do your work and do have a lovely day and a blessed new week. May Jesus give you the grace to do what will contribute to the development of our world and for the wellbeing of all. Amen. *And may the Almighty God bless you: the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen.*_

*Meditation:* Ezekiel 1:2-5,24-28/Psalm 148:1-2,11-14/Matthew 17:22-27

*Watch-Word:* Heaven and earth are full of your glory.

*Be a good citizen of the world and you will be a good citizen of heaven.*

(Monday of the nineteenth week in the ordinary time. Year II. Memorial of St. Dominic)

*© Rev. Fr. Augustine Eleke*