16 November 2015

Faithful Witness.

This past Friday, there were a series of attacks that caused a lot of death, damage, pain and anger.  The official death toll, thus far, is 129 and many more are still reportedly in critical condition.  Around the world, countless people are struck by these events and by so many others that have taken place in recent memory.  In the midst of all this, we enter a season of reflection and preparation, a season during which we reflect on the coming of Our Savior.  Hopefully, we also take the time to reflect on what this preparation and Advent means to us in the profound ways.  This being said, I feel that I must address the recent attacks and violence in light of Christ the King.  First and foremost, it is import to remember one thing, in Jesus, God took on flesh.  The Almighty God, took on our condition.  He wasn't heralded by the powerful and mighty, but celebrated by the poor and humble.  That being said, (and I speak from a very profound part of my own journey), I believe that now, more than ever, we Christians are being called upon to love.  More than ever, we are called upon to become that whom we receive in the Eucharist.  We are called upon to take on the Christ-call that is shared with us in our Baptism and through the Sacraments and we are to be love in the world.  I once heard someone say that Christ was the human face of God, and that humans were the active presence of Christ.  (or something like that).  Either way, the message was simple, we can no longer stand around and profess our love for God and then leave church and go on living lives that are not deeply rooted and formed by the same love we just professed.  It is a challenge, and sin does a great job of distracting us, but what does it mean to look beyond some silly red cup or some false piety or patriotism?  Christ is the antithesis of all those things that today present themselves as Christian, and yet we cling to an idea of Jesus that is easily made into a blow-mold and lit up at our convenience.  It is a challenge to be Gospel people, or Sacramental people, but the call to holiness is not one that is easily answered, it takes true effort to be able to become Saints and to stand as witnesses of Him who Himself is THE Faithful Witness.  Yes, the violence may not cease immediately by our efforts in love, but to answer violence with more violence, or even worse, to answer violence with fear, will only continue the seemingly endless cycles of destruction that we have witnessed.  As challenging as this may be, perhaps our call as Christians is not to fight radical Islam, or even to convert more Christians, perhaps our call is to convert ourselves, to walk away from that which most distracts me from love and to refocus on Him who offered Himself for each one of us.  Perhaps our call is not to see how many points we gain by making "new Christians," but to see how much more I can develop my relationship with God.  And perhaps more importantly (and this is especially true for me), our call is to look right next to us and see those who stand with us even as they recognize the special brand of crazy that we may carry.  Perhaps that is the one thing we need to do most, to remind ourselves of the intense love of GOd as we look to our rights and to our lefts, not in fear, but in love, and recognize those friends and family that stand by us and love us, those who in their own way, are the loving presence of God.  Maybe then, as we look into each other's eyes, we can celebrate the coming of God who's love is witnessed not in the grand Christmas displays, but in the hugs and smiles that are shared among friends and family.  In the end, it's not difficult, because as annoying as our crazy uncles may be, the somehow manage to bring joy and love into our lives, even if we can only take it in doses of one day a year.  And so, know that you are beautiful and that you are loved and that together, we will make this world better, one smile at a time.  Peace to you.  Fr Rick

No comments:

Post a Comment