“May we be bold in facing humiliations, in suffering persecutions and in undergoing pain, for the Sake of Christ, who showed us the Way to Glory through the path of persecution!”
(Based on Hos 14:1-9 and Mt 10:16-23 – Friday of the 14th Week of Ordinary Time)
Teilhard de Chardin, a French Priest, Theologian and Philosopher describes three categories of people who climb a difficult mountain peak….
- The Pessimists – (the ones who give up easily):
They regret having ventured to undertake the arduous task of climbing the huge mountain.
- The Hedonists – (the ones who remain passive and just enjoy)
They are satisfied with just some scenic views on the way and cease the journey, with simple trifles, unwilling to take the risk to go ahead…
- The Enthusiasts – (the ones who seek to conquer the mountains)
They are the real mountaineers, who keep their eyes fixed on the peaks and never give up, till they reach their goal!
The road to being a Disciple of Christ, is indeed climbing a Mountain peak….
Which category of mountain climbers are we going to be?
- The Pessimists (the ones who give up easily)?
Regretting to being a Christian and thus living a life of sin and indifference
- The Hedonists (the ones who remain passive and just enjoy)?
Resigning to the fact that somehow I need to be a Christian, due to societal pressures, and thus live in casualness, negligence and lethargy.
- The Enthusiasts (the ones who seek to conquer the mountains)?
Real Christians who keep their eyes fixed on the Crucified Saviour and never give up, marching forward towards the goal of salvation!
The Gospel of the Day is a presentation of the challenges that are to be encountered by every follower of Christ…
… the one who wishes to walk with Jesus on the way of the Cross
… the one who wishes to scale the mountain of holiness and sanctity
When we read through the Gospels, we observe that our Lord Jesus and His teachings remained unfazed, in the midst of glamour and sensations…
They are simple and yet deeply challenging and radical!
The Lord does not offer a Comfortable Carpet of Roses to stroll….
He presents a Challenging Pathway of Thorns to tread!
“Everyone will hate you, because of ME!” (Mt 10:22a)
These are the fierce & fervent words of the Lord.
Yes, the Master, Himself was persecuted and hated!
He was the Epitome of Love…
… and yet He was badly hated, persecuted and tortured…
What had He ever done to be hated?
Being Meek and Humble of Heart…
… touching lives with Healing and Forgiveness…?
Being a Gospel of Love to all…
… even to the Enemies…?
Being a Symbol of Pardon and Forgiveness…
… even to those who persecuted and killed Him…?
Being an Emblem of Truth…
… in the midst of diluted ideologies & hypocritical ritualism…?
Being an Ornament of Joy and Hope…
… to the broken-hearted, the sinful and the rejected…?
Did he deserve to be hated?
Yet, He was!
He was hated… mocked at… rejected… finally even arrested, scourged and killed!
And this our Blessed Master says…Even You too!
Even you too, My Followers, will be hated and will be persecuted!
The path ahead sounds dangerous, right?
The mountain climbing seems to be not as easy as thought, right?
The road does not end with persecutions…
The verse of Jesus does not end in calamity…
He goes on to say: “… but whoever endures to the end will be saved!” (Mt 10: 22b)
Yeah.. That’s great good news!
The Way of Jesus is surely laden with persecutions…
….but it is also filled with much joy, satisfaction, true peace
…and finally rewarded with Eternal Life!
We only need to persevere……till the end!
The Mountain Peak of Salvation is High….
But the Lord beckons to each one of us!
He also reminds us through Prophet Hosea, “Return to Your God Yahweh, O Israel!” (Hos 14:2)
Let us give heed to the words of St Benedict:
“Prefer nothing whatever to Christ….and he will bring us all together to everlasting life!”
May we be bold in facing humiliations, in suffering persecutions, in undergoing pain…
… all for the Sake of Christ, who showed us the Way to Glory through the Path of Persecution!
Let’s keep on moving… let’s keep climbing… let’s keep the Faith!
God Bless! Live Jesus!
Quotable-quote-a-day-with-St Francis de Sales (SFS) – “You must choose.
Is it better that there should be thorns in your garden in order to have roses…