Everything that the Father gives me will come to me,
and I will not reject anyone who comes to me,
because I came down from heaven not to do my own will
but the will of the one who sent me.
And this is the will of the one who sent me,
that I should not lose anything of what he gave me,
but that I should raise it on the last day. (Jn 6:37-39)
The Church is in turmoil today. Many people reject the Good News. Some attack those who preach the Word of God and, at times, those attacks lead to death.
We may think that this is something new. Sadly, it has been the case throughout the recorded history of the Church.
Our first reading reminds us that, after the stoning death of St. Stephen, a persecution erupted toward the Church. Saul led a great contingent of people against the Christians. His entire goal was to eradicate Christianity from the face of the earth.
The Christians, on the other hand, did all that they could do to tell people about Jesus. They knew that they could face death. They did not let that stop them.
Perhaps it was because they relied on the promises of Jesus who said that he would not reject anyone who came to Him but, rather, that He would raise them on the last day.
Our lives, if we live them as completely as possible as Christians, are in jeopardy. There may be people out there who are willing to do anything to silence us, to keep us from giving good example.
Resist the temptation to buckle in fear.
God is on our side.
Jesus will not allow us to be lost.
FAITH ACTION: Pray for those who, because of fear, have abandoned the practice of the faith. May God give them the courage to take up their crosses once again.