READINGOld Testament: Deuteronomy 9:13-21
Psalms: Psalms 119:49-72
New Testament: Hebrews 3:12-19
Gospel: John 2:23-3:15
Evening Psalms: Psalms 49, 53
“It was good for me to be afflicted so that I might learn your decrees. The law from your mouth is more precious to me than thousands of pieces of silver and gold.” (Psalm 119:71-72)
Our world and our personal lives are often so full of turmoil. What balm can science or philosophy create to ease this suffering and worry that we all at some point must confront?
Not long ago I came home from the hospital but a shell of my former self. A rare disease had atrophied my muscles to such an extent that I could not walk or even dress myself. I had to rely on my family for every assurance of existence. I had lost all security and confidence for facing the world. Hope had been eclipsed by fear and insecurity.
But somehow in that darkness I rediscovered a light I always suspected existed. I knew that God was with me all along and would not leave me. I felt this light through all the souls at St. Matts. I felt this light in the gift of my wife that God gave me to make sure I knew that love is stronger than anything else in the world. Instead of relying on a fleeting physical ability or risky economic cushion, I felt the new assurance of a love that is far more valuable and is there for all eternity.
Now, the challenge is not to let the gales of circumstance dim the light in me or in anyone else who needs it. I know this is not easy. We seem to be challenged on a daily basis. It seems sometimes the odds are so stacked against us. But the light is still there, and I ask every Sunday to help in any way I can to keep that light alive. Today’s New Testament passage speaks clearly to me of this task:
“But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called ‘Today,’ so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness. We have come to share in Christ, if we hold firmly till the end the confidence we had at first.” (Hebrews 3:13-14)