Saturday, July 9, 2011

"Love has no room for fear"

“Where there is charity and wisdom, there is neither fear nor ignorance.” - St Francis of Assisi

Gospel text (Mt 10,24-33):
Jesus said to his Apostles:
“No disciple is above his teacher,
no slave above his master.
It is enough for the disciple that he become like his teacher,
for the slave that he become like his master.
If they have called the master of the house Beelzebul,
how much more those of his household!
“Therefore do not be afraid of them.
Nothing is concealed that will not be revealed,
nor secret that will not be known.
What I say to you in the darkness, speak in the light;
what you hear whispered, proclaim on the housetops.
And do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul;
rather, be afraid of the one who can destroy
both soul and body in Gehenna.
Are not two sparrows sold for a small coin?
Yet not one of them falls to the ground without your Father’s knowledge.
Even all the hairs of your head are counted.
So do not be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.
Everyone who acknowledges me before others
I will acknowledge before my heavenly Father.
But whoever denies me before others,
I will deny before my heavenly Father.”

In the Gospel lesson for today, Jesus also tells us that we should not be afraid of anything that can kill our bodies but not our souls. He reminds us how much our heavenly Father values us and cares for us. But Jesus does tell us that we should be afraid of the evil one that can destroy both our bodies and our souls in hell.

How can we protect ourselves from this danger to our souls? Jesus tells us that we are to proclaim his teachings with great confidence. But if we deny Jesus, we are in grave danger. What does this mean for our daily lives?

I have come to believe that while God does take care of the lowly and God does take care of each of us, to fail to work with God by doing the work of Jesus to care for others is a form of denying Christ. I even feel that to dismiss the suffering of others with the statement that “God will take care of it” is to take the Lord’s name in vain. When we go to Mass on Sunday, not only are we fed on the very Body and Blood of Our Lord, we all are called to action. Remember what the deacon proclaims at the end of every Mass, “Go in peace to LOVE & SERVE the Lord.

I believe that God is all powerful. But I also have come to understand that I need to seek to serve him constantly by proclaiming Christ’s love for others in the midst of all life’s challenges. I am not afraid to say that. In fact, I am afraid for my soul if I don’t.

Today I pray for our souls and that we will all be given more confidence to proclaim Christ in the very real circumstances of our troubled world.

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