by Sister Madonna Swintkoske
As we read Sunday’s first reading and Gospel, we could become somewhat anxious with the words and phrases of “judgment,” “bloodshed,” “kingdom of God will be taken away from you.” However, the second reading helps relieve the anxiety, assuring us that the God of peace will be with us.
We are encouraged by St. Paul when he states, “Have no anxiety at all, but in everything, by prayer, with thanksgiving, make your requests known to God.”
When we are anxious, emotionally disturbed, or experiencing grief, we can prayerfully express our needs to God.
Slowing down our fast-paced life, spending time in nature, reading inspiring books, reflecting in quiet are some other ways we can relieve our anxiety and find peace. The God of peace will be with us.
Thank you for this great reflection of encouragement!
Beautifully put and so timely!
I hear the message of the first reading and the gospel as a necessary reminder of what is expected of us, as People of God -- seeking the way of truth, over deception; the way of care for all, over prejudice, discrimination, arrogance and superiority, mean-spirited hatred; the ways of life (creative acts of self-giving) over the ways of death (violence - in words, attitudes, actions).
These stories are not told to us to cause angst and anxiety, but to let us know how important it is that we never stop seeking to know and fulfill what God requires of us, as God's Beloved.
"If you want peace, work (act) for justice," was the theme of Pope Paul VI some years back. This 'rang true' for many, as we came to realize how a just society bears fruits of peace; whereas, an unjust society breeds violence, corruption, death.
We are each and all being asked to work for - to act for - creating a just society.
Thank you we definitely need the words of St. Paul in our lives today! They bring us hope!