Blessed day by day be the Lord,
who bears our burdens; God, who is our salvation.
God is a saving God for us;
the Lord, my Lord, controls the passageways of death. (Ps 68:20-21)
We all have burdens. We have the burdens of family and friends who may not always understand us or, even, support us. We have the burdens of trying to live the faith in a faithless environment, whether that environment be our home, school, our job or anywhere else in society. We have the burden of sticking out like a sore thumb. For, if we truly live the life of a Christian, we automatically set ourselves against the world.
This burden can be light at times. It can also be oppressively heavy.
Some people who shoulder the burden of Christianity pay the ultimate price — their life — for daring to speak of Jesus.
Today is one of those reminders as we celebrate the memorial of St. Charles Lwanga and his companions.
Rather than succumb to the immoral demands being placed upon them, Charles protected his followers. This action got them arrested and, afterwards, they were brutalized and burned to death.
It is not easy being a follower of the Lord. Sometimes, it can be a great burden. Other times, the burden can lead to death.
We just need to remember that all anyone can do to us is take away our life. But, if we hold firm, we know someone who can restore that life and restore it for life eternal.
That’s not a bad exchange at all for putting up with some grief here on earth.
FAITH ACTION: Reflect upon the words of St. Ignatius of Antioch as he awaited his own martyrdom:
I am the wheat of God, and am ground by the teeth of the wild beasts, that I may be found the pure bread of God…. I long after the Lord, the Son of the true God and Father, Jesus Christ. Him I seek, who died for us and rose again…. I am eager to die for the sake of Christ. My love has been crucified, and there is no fire in me that loves anything. But there is living water springing up in me, and it says to me inwardly: Come to the Father.