Daily Reflection – Nov 23, 2016
Wednesday 23 November 2016
First Reading: Apocalypse 15:1-4
Great and wonderful are all your works, Lord, mighty God
Psalm 97(98):1-3, 7-9
Gospel Reading: Luke 21:12-19
Today’s Saint: St Clement I, Pope and Martyr (Memorial)
Jesus said to the crowd:
“They will seize and persecute you,
they will hand you over to the synagogues and to prisons,
and they will have you led before kings and governors
because of my name.
It will lead to your giving testimony.
Remember, you are not to prepare your defense beforehand,
for I myself shall give you a wisdom in speaking
that all your adversaries will be powerless to resist or refute.
You will even be handed over by parents,
brothers, relatives, and friends,
and they will put some of you to death.
You will be hated by all because of my name,
but not a hair on your head will be destroyed.
By your perseverance you will secure your lives.”
Persecution and betrayal – no other promise of Jesus is as tangible as the Cross. But in this stark Gospel there is a consolation far deeper than any false religion could promise, for what Jesus promises is no different from what He Himself underwent for our sake. We are promised a share in the destiny of Christ.
This destiny is not written in the horoscopic stars but in the providential care of the Father who will ensure that, no matter what persecution comes, we will not be harmed. The destiny of Jesus was not determined by the cultivated and calculating wisdom of the world which is prepared for any eventuality. It was moulded rather by the wisdom of God which He Himself embodied since He was the Word of God become flesh.
For us, then, a share in the destiny of Jesus could mean an initiation into the whole mystery of Jesus Himself, where He gives us the words and the wisdom necessary to face the threat of the uncompromising world. In the light of this wisdom, patient endurance is not something passive, but an active constancy and fidelity to the Father, Son and Spirit who surround us with their care.
“Into Your Hands, O Lord, I command myself and all I am.”