- Fr. Leo
XVIII Sunday in Ordinary Time. Reflection of the Word of God.
"Anguish and affliction" cannot take us away from God. Look at the ways in which we suffer: pain, doubts, loneliness, depression and personal failures. As difficult as all these burdens are, they cannot dissolve our bond with the God who loves us. "Persecution" cannot do it. Nothing that comes from the outside, no social pressure, rejection, disapproval, defamation or shame can take us away from God. We have nothing to fear, neither "hunger, nor nakedness." These and other material deprivations can cause great harm and even threaten our existence; but not our life, ultimately, because our life is in Christ.
Should we be uneasy about the "danger"?
We live in a world full of reasons to be insecure: pandemics, racism, domestic violence, poverty, and economic instability. A sudden illness could wipe out our savings. Saint Paul assures us that even if the worst things that we can imagine happen, they cannot put us beyond the love of the one who gave his live for us.
How about "the sword"? Violence has been the banner of a generation that we could say follow the culture of death. And Jesus himself was the victim of capital punishment, and even the cross could not break our communion with him. In fact, the cross became the same bridge through which our reconciliation with God was achieved and over which humanity can now safely pass for the great reunion with our God.