Just as a seed, once it is planted, has a power within it that drives it to become the tree it is meant to be, so God’s kingdom, once planted in our world and in our souls by Jesus himself, takes root and spreads its branches slowly but surely throughout all of human history.
A myriad of scenarios can explain the weight that we hold deep within. The older we get it seems as though the more baggage we tend to collect. Our baggage has become our comfort and definition. We don’t experience what Jesus promised because we fear, or we doubt. But Jesus is patient as he is persistent.
God is calling us to serve and love Him above all else. God speaks to us not as an optional side character in our stories, but as the passionate lover determined to make sure we know that the way to true happiness and freedom can only come from Him. The only way our stories will make sense is in light of the greater story of God’s plan of salvation for humanity.
The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity reminds us that the God whom we adore is “one God in the Trinity” and “Trinity in unity” (from The Athanasian Creed), inviting us to consider that all of our relationships are reflections of that unique and dynamic communion that exists within God — the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
This Pentecost is much like the first one. It finds us behind closed doors, in fervent prayer, longing for our Lord. The Holy Spirit leads us out into a world that has changed dramatically over the past year. However, the message is the same. God has won the victory in Jesus Christ.
I had thought it odd for the longest while that Jesus would say that he was going to go away. He had risen from the dead recently so couldn’t he stick around? On pilgrimage in the Holy Land, in a small church which has a marbleized footprint on the ground commemorating the last step of Jesus as he was lifted into the sky, I was still confounded.
In the Gospel we hear Jesus say to us, “I will not leave you orphans, I will come to you…” This gospel is striking during our current times. In a time of confusion, suffering, uncertainty, and for many isolation and loneliness, God the Father is actively caring for us and telling each of us, you are not alone.
Promises have meaning and can be taken seriously when they come from God. In uncertain times, there is great comfort in the assurance of faith. In knowing the Way, the Truth, and the Life, which provides the means to how a heart can stay untroubled.
Do you ever feel that life is unfair? Is your faith in God still strong in the midst of hardship, confusion, anxiety and suffering? Can you love a God who leaves you with your suffering? If we look to the passion of Christ, we clearly see a God who does not eradicate or sidestep injustice and great suffering, but embraces them.
St. Luke presents Cleopas and his companion fleeing Jerusalem after the death and burial of Jesus and, although they had heard the testimony of the women that Jesus had been raised from the dead, their disappointment and grief would not allow them to believe such an amazing story. Their despair is captured in one simple but profound statement: “We had hoped…”