November 23, 2016
(St. Clement, Pope and Martyr)
Jesus said, “It will lead to your giving testimony. Remember, you are not to prepare your defense beforehand, for I myself shall give you a wisdom in speaking that all your adversaries will be powerless to resist or refute.” Lk_21:12-19
If today’s Gospel sounds familiar, it should, because we just heard this same reading the Sunday before last. And maybe that’s a sign to us; because it is just as important for us to hear again today, as it was for the disciples of Jesus, 2000-years ago.
You see, after Jesus suffered His passion and death. After His resurrection and ascension, His disciples WERE persecuted and imprisoned. They were sent before governors and kings, and had to testify, as we had seen in the case of Paul. And most of them suffered violent deaths as well.
But why should that be important to us? . . .
Because many people in our world today are already suffering that same persecution. And it wouldn’t take very much imagination to see it happen to us as well, right here in our own country. And as much as we might think we’re free, and comfortable, and secure, there really is a war going on out there.
It’s a war of life versus death.
It’s a war of good versus evil.
And sometimes we just might feel like we’re the only ones who really understand . . . We’re the only ones who really love Jesus and others that way He wants us to. Remember, Jesus said, “By your perseverance, you will secure your lives.”
You see, our lives are only secure, when we place them in the hands of Jesus. He will give us the words we need when we need them. He will give us the strength we need, even in persecution. And He will ALWAYS Love us, even when we mess up . . . As long as we never give up on Him.
And that’s pretty Awesome!
In the meantime, we’ll keep on praying for our brothers and sisters who don’t understand . . . that God loves them – just as much!
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