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Homily (Reflection) for the Twelfth Sunday of the Year (A) (21st June, 2020) on the Gospel
Jer 20:10-13;
Ps 68:8-10.14.17.33-35 (R.V.14);
Rom 5:12-15;
Matt 10:26-33.
Jim Moore recalls being five and at his grandmother’s house when a fierce storm broke out. His father had to come get him. The wind was blowing; rain was pelting down; lightning was flashing; thunder was rumbling behind the clouds. The storm showed no signs of letting up....Jim’s father was wearing a big blue weather coat, and said, “Son, come here.” He covered his young son with his coat, and out into the storm they went. Even though it was raining hard, the wind was howling, and he couldn’t see a thing under that coat, young Jim was not at all afraid. He knew his father could see where they were going, so he just held on tightly and trusted him. Soon the coat opened and they were home.[1]
Topic: ...have no fear (Matt 10:26).
Many are very familiar with the passage, “with God all things are possible” (Matt 19:26) and other similar passages, cf. Lk 1:37. 18:27; Mk 10:27. Again, God knows everything, cf. 1Jn 3:20. We often cite these and similar passages especially while addressing others.
Observing how some live, one wonders whether these go beyond the lips. I remember a priest who broke down in tears while addressing those who came to his mother’s funeral. Other priests while consoling him reminded him that he used to tell others not cry for nothing is unknown to God. Surprisingly, he retorted, “The person in question was my very own mother.”
Troubles will certainly come our ways in one form or another but we must see them as opportunity to testify, cf. Lk 21:13. God beckons, “Call on me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall glorify me” (Ps 50:15). However to the wicked God is saying, “What right have you to recite my statutes, or take my covenant on your lips? For you hate discipline, and you cast my words behind you” (Ps 50:16-17; cf. Prov 1:28).
Often instead of troubles taking us closer to our saviour, it drives many very far from the saviour (God), cf. Ps 106:21. Jesus is telling us in today’s gospel,
Do not fear.... Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet none of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. And even the hairs of your head are counted. So do not be afraid; you are of more value than many sparrows (Matt 10:28-31).
In our introductory story, ‘Even though it was raining hard, the wind was howling, and he couldn’t see a thing under that coat, young Jim was not at all afraid. He knew his father could see where they were going, so he just held on tightly and trusted him.’ You may not know how to come out of the problem you are in but certainly God does and will lead us like the blind to safety, cf. Is 42:16. God will never forsake us in the wilderness of this world, cf. Is 49:15; Neh 9:19; Ps 78:14, 53.
God expects us to cling to Him more firmly than Jim clung to his father. And to have confidence in Him more than Jim placed in his father. God expects us to cry to Him from the heart, cf. Hos 7:14. You may have broke faith. There is still hope. God promises, “if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land” (2Chr 7:14). Finally, Christ assures us, “Everyone... who acknowledges me before others, I also will acknowledge before my Father in heaven; but whoever denies me before others, I also will deny before my Father in heaven” (Matt 10:32-33). Every situation we face in this world is an opportunity to either acknowledge Christ or deny Him.
Bible Reading: 2Chr 7:12-22; Hos 6:1-11; Is 49:8-26; Matt 10:16-25.
Thought for today: God is truly all-powerful and a faithful God.
Let us pray: Lord, help us to be always conscious that you are a faithful God and all-powerful – Amen.
You are free to share this reflection with others if you consider it worthy.

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[1] Fuller, G., (2010). Stories for all seasons. Mumbai: St Pauls, p. 38.

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