2 Timothy 2:8-15 / Mark 12:28-34
St. Thomas Aquinas (1225 – 1274) was a learned man and a great theologian.
He was the author of that great work "Summa Theologica" (Latin: "Summary of Theology" or "Highest Theology").
But towards the end of his life, he stopped his academic work after he had a mystical experience of God, and he said: all that I have written seems like straw to me.
In certain aspects, what St. Thomas Aquinas echoed what St. Paul said in the 1st reading that life is not a wrangling about words.
St. Paul urged Timothy to be brave and to stand before God as a man who has come through his trials and has no cause to be ashamed of his life's work.
St. Paul himself had faced hostility and persecution and imprisonment and shipwreck.
So he did not just talked the talk; he had already walked the walk.
The walk we have to make is in the path of the commandment that Jesus gave in the gospel.
To love God and to love neighbour is all that is necessary and the most fundamental.
If we not doing this, then all we are doing is like straw.