When I signed up for the blog for November 13th I had no idea what the Sunday readings were going to be. As I researched the readings for writing this week’s blog and found them, I have to admit, I was a bit bummed out. They are not the feel good messages of the Song of Songs or some of the Psalms: at first glance, they are a bit of a “Debbie Downer.” The gospel tells us about Jesus saying, “All that you see here—the days will come when there will not be left a stone upon another stone that will not be thrown down.” “See that you not be deceived, for many will come in my name, saying ‘I am he, and the time has come.’ Do not follow them!” “Before all this happens, however, they will seize and persecute you.” Yikes.
But here comes the punch line: “Remember, you are not to prepare your defense beforehand, for I myself shall give you a wisdom in speaking that all your adversaries will be powerless to resist or refute…but not a hair on your head will be destroyed. By your perseverance you will secure your lives.” Luke 21:5-19
I feel like I am in the midst of what the Gospel is talking about. As a counselor I hear so much sadness and brokenness that is happening in so many lives right now. I read in the news of all the foundational beliefs of our country being challenged, the family, the church, and religious freedom to name a few. I have friends and family who have left the Church, left the faith, left Christianity and are following the latest glitter and bling being given to them by the culture, their friends or the media. They look at me like I have two heads when I want to say grace over a meal or go to Mass or talk about God. I sometimes wonder if I am crazy or if what is going on around me is really what’s crazy.
Then I remember, I am living in a war zone; I know who wins the war but the latest battle is for souls, so I soldier on and wait for the day when my adversaries are defenseless, praying for wisdom, and remembering the punchline of today’s Gospel. “I myself shall give you a wisdom in speaking.” God himself is going to provide my defense. The God of justice. The God of the universe. I know that God is real. I know that God loves me. Even in the midst of the darkness, the battle, the pain and the suffering those truths don’t change. Some days I don’t feel it, but each day I can make the choice to believe it and to stand in that belief until the time when I do feel it. “Not a hair on your head will be destroyed. By your perseverance you will secure your lives.” Thank you Jesus! Can I hear an Amen!!!