Homily‎ > ‎

16th Sept. 2018 - 24th Sunday of Year B

posted 13 Sep 2018, 08:19 by Veronica Yarwood

 HB. & Hw.

No quick fix! That is not what is on offer. No

magic! That is certainly not on offer. No jump‑

leads-healing. Only profound hope. Jesus offers us

profound hope, absolute certainty.

 

"Snares of death", "anguish of the tomb", "sorrow

and distress", "stumbling" and "tears", pain and

suffering we all experience. And Jesus offers us

profound hope, which in the Christian book is

certainty.

 

Not ours then to seek and want explanations of

human tragedy. The question, "Why does a loving

God allow all this suffering to happen?" verges on

blasphemy. The loving God suffers all we suffer,

only more so. And in Jesus the loving God offers

us profound hope.

 

But the one thing we do not run away from is

suffering. The one thing we do not deny is

suffering. Jesus does not run away from crippling

individual sickness. Nor do we. Jesus does not

avoid the multitudes starving with hunger. Nor do

we. With him we live in the real world, our world

as it is, with its deep mystery of pain and suffering.

 

And we do not ask, "What did I do to deserve

this?" Even if I can say, "I've always tried to live a

good life." We really do need to eradicate this

petulant attitude. We do not even say, "I am being

punished by God for this or that misdemeanour, sin

or mistake." What kind of God do we make our

God out to be by such attitude and thinking? A

monster surely, which is blasphemy.

 

Nor do we actively seek suffering. As if it were a

virtue. Jesus does not. Nor do we. But what we

must say is, that Jesus understands suffering and

death as the inevitable consequence of his life and

ministry. Seek to release God's power in the

world, seek to love like Jesus and we pay the price.

We get hurt.

 

And we can still join the Lord in his Gethsemane

prayer, "Take this chalice from me". But we must

pray the whole prayer, "not my will but thine!".

This is the prayer that removes the barreness. This

is the prayer prayed in profound hope that takes

away the apparent futility. This is the prayer that

takes us through the triple ordeal of mind and body

and spirit; the threefold failure to resurrection, new

life and joy.

 

"The one who grants me saving justice is near."

Nearer to me than I am to myself. And no

situation, no matter how bleak, is hopeless. The

heart of our faith is precisely that death gives way

to life. We acknowledge the darkness but look

forward towards the light.

 

Even this hope can, very often does, seem far, far

away. But then we remember that Jesus offers no

quick fix; only deep down, profound certainty that

all will be well. Through him, with him and in him

all will be well.

 

 

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