“If you look for truth, you may find comfort in the end; if you look for comfort you will not get either comfort or truth only soft soap and wishful thinking to begin, and in the end, despair.” - C.S. Lewis
(Gospel Text: LK 12:49-53)
Jesus said to his disciples: "I have come to set the earth on fire, and how I wish it were already blazing! There is a baptism with which I must be baptized, and how great is my anguish until it is accomplished! Do you think that I have come to establish peace on the earth? No, I tell you, but rather division. From now on a household of five will be divided, three against two and two against three; a father will be divided against his son and a son against his father, a mother against her daughter and a daughter against her mother, a mother-in-law against her daughter-in-law and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law."
Easier said than done.”
How often do we repeat this phrase in our daily lives? We use it so often it’s become a clichéd excuse for inaction when confronted with some obstacle, either real or imagined. We casually dismiss advice and suggestions as too insurmountable.
Less often, however, someone will respond with “Well, I did,” or “It worked for me.” Nothing is as disarming as hearing someone else has done exactly what we’ve shrugged off as “easier said than done.” These instances are cause for pause, to be certain, and can make us rethink our own perceptions of what we can, and should, do.
In our reading, Jesus reminds us that following his word brings about certain challenges and divisions, assuring listeners (and readers) that a Catholic life is not always easy. Nonetheless, he still calls upon us to follow his teachings and to submit ourselves to God at any cost.
“Easier said than done.”
It’s a challenge.
It’s a challenge for us to do as we ask others to do, to be what we ask others to be, and to live a life that may cause divisions. But that’s what being a good and honest human being calls for, at times. When confronted with a hypothetical, it’s easy for us to imagine (or hope) what we’d do in a trying situation. We must remind ourselves (or, rather, allow God to remind us) that, though the righteous path is often “easier said than done,” we are more than an empty promise to ourselves and God, but we are doers.