Monday, June 13, 2005
The words which Jesus spoke to his disciples, and which He is now addressing to us, should provide strength and consolation. "…do not be afraid of those who kill the body but after that can do no more. Be afraid of the one who, after killing, has the power to cast into Gehenna." The disciples knew that they would also share the fate of Jesus. But their love and their faith in Him, gave them the strength and encouragement to persevering until the end.
Our daily lives provide testimony to the inescapable truth that pain, suffering and death are a part of life. But by remaining faithful to the Lord and following Him even in the face of adversities, we make sense of suffering and have the strength to transform it to sacrifices. We become participants in the redemptive work of Jesus. There is no salvation without the cross, no Easter Sunday without Good Friday. The promise of our Lord, as mentioned in today's first reading, gives us the encouragement to face the daily adversities that we may meet. "He is the pledge of our inheritance, the first payment against the full redemption of a people God has made his own, to praise his glory."
Let us not be afraid!