November 3, 2017
(St. Martin de Porres, Religious)
St. Paul said, “I could wish that I myself were accursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my own people, my kindred according to the flesh. They are children of Israel; theirs the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises; theirs the patriarchs, and from them, according to the flesh, is the Christ, who is over all, God blessed forever. Amen.” Rom_9:1-5
Imagine. And it’s actually not hard to imagine, because we have example after example of people in situations like this. Imagine being born into wealth and choosing to live in starvation on the streets. Or imagine completing High School with honors, getting a full scholarship into a prestigious university, completing college and medical school in the top of your class, and then choosing to work as a trash collector instead.
Both St. Paul and Jesus were astounded by the Choice made by their fellow Jews, not to believe in the Messiah that their whole faith was built upon. From the Covenant promises made with Abraham, Moses and David, and the reminders of those Covenants by the Prophets, the Jews really had no excuse not to believe in Jesus, especially after all He had done and taught, and how it all – perfectly fulfilled those promises that they knew by heart.
But you know what, sometimes even today, the Truth can stare us right in the face; it can bowl us over, and if we’ve got some other agenda in mind, we can make ourselves totally BLIND to that Truth in favor of our own end. And sometimes, Life itself can beat us up so badly that we no longer trust-in any-thing or any-one!
St. Paul and Jesus used common sense. They used Words. They used examples. And they even used miracles to try to open the eyes of the most stubborn unbelievers of their time. But some rocks – just cannot be overturned, even when the outcome is Life and Death. And in the end, all that was left for them was Love and Prayer.
You see, beloved, at some point, Life is going to strike all of us. And if it’s not a direct hit to our own health, or our loved ones, or something really close to us, it’s just seeing the world and all we care about, especially those who have no control of their situations – being abused by those who choose to live in a trash heap or create one for others, instead of living in the paradise that God has blessed us all with, and sharing it.
But praise be to God, WE have the choice. We, who Believe, have the choice to allow all of those evils of the world to make us miserable, or we can choose, instead, to change it, one soul at a time, one smile at a time, because we know that in our hearts we have the Spirit of our Lord and God.
We have the Wisdom of God’s love, and we choose to share it rather than hoard it. And we Believe in the Promise of Jesus: that our futures hold the Joy of eternal life – with no more pain, and no more suffering, and no more fear!
And that hope gives us the strength to endure whatever the world wants to throw at us.
Praise be to God,
in our Lord Jesus Christ!
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