June 7, 2017
Grief-stricken in spirit, I, Tobit, groaned and wept aloud. . . .
“So now (Lord), deal with me as you please, and command my life breath to be taken from me, that I may go from the face of the earth into dust. It is better for me to die than to live, because I have heard insulting calumnies, and I am overwhelmed with grief.
On the same day, at Ecbatana in Media, it so happened that Raguel’s daughter Sarah, also in grief, pondered death . . . It is far better for me not to hang myself, but to beg the Lord to have me die, so that I need no longer live to hear such insults.” At that time, then, she spread out her hands, and facing the window, poured out her prayer: “Blessed are you, O Lord, merciful God, and blessed is your holy and honorable name. Blessed are you in all your works for ever!”
Insult and persecution can truly lead us to desperation. But the Lord does hear the prayers of the faithful . . .
At that very time, the prayer of these two suppliants was heard in the glorious presence of Almighty God. So Raphael was sent to heal them both: to remove the cataracts from Tobit’s eyes, so that he might again see God’s sunlight; and to marry Raguel’s daughter Sarah to Tobit’s son Tobiah, and then drive the wicked demon Asmodeus from her. Tb_3:1-11a,16-17a
And thus begins the story of the salvation of Tobit and Sarah through the Love of God the Father, the breath of an angel, and the intercession of an obedient son.
In the front of our Church, within and around the cracks in
the sidewalk, every morning I watch a long line of ants marching from one side of our entrance to the other, and back again.
And sometimes there are ants who lose their way, and wander far from the trail, meandering around in circles. And when I see those ants, it reminds me of our Scripture readings today. Because, here we are, like Tobit, and Sarah, and the Sadducees,
blindly marching from birth to grave, thinking that what we do
in life is important; thinking that someone, somewhere appreciates what we do or understands who we really are; when in reality, we get fired from our jobs, our spouses betray or leave us, and we have to worry about where the next terrorist’s bomb will explode.
And when those things happen to us, we find ourselves, like those lost ants, wandering around in circles, trying to find our way back, or like Tobit and Sarah, wishing that we never existed in the first place.
And just like my watching those ants, somewhere so far beyond our vision, there’s Our God, watching over every step WE take.
There’s Our God, sending angels among us, to heal us and to guide us back to the trail.
There’s Our God, in the Words of Jesus, teaching us that there really IS more to life than just this little ant path that we’re walking.
When we can truly place our Trust, our Faith, in this God who Loves us, so far beyond our deepest vision; when we can let go of self enough to truly follow the Words of Jesus: to love our God, and to love our neighbor; then, not only will we find meaning on this little ant path from birth to grave, but that little ant path will lead us right into the bosom of His love, forever.
And that’s a path worth following!
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