Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Firm in Faith

Firm in Faith

July 17 2012
Tuesday of the Fifteenth Week in Ordinary Time

By Beth DeCristofaro

Thus says the LORD:  This shall not stand, it shall not be! Damascus is the capital of Aram, and Rezin is the head of Damascus; Samaria is the capital of Ephraim, and Remaliah's son the head of Samaria.  But within sixty years and five, Ephraim shall be crushed, no longer a nation.  Unless your faith is firm you shall not be firm! (Isaiah 7:7-9)

For if the mighty deeds done in your midst had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day.  But I tell you, it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom on the day of judgment than for you." (Matthew 11:23-24)


Open my eyes, Lord, that I might see the mighty deeds you perform each and every day whether they are powerful or gently quiet.  Open my heart, Lord, that in faith I watch for your presence in each encounter with another.  Deepen my faith that I stand firm in You in the joys and sorrows of my life.


There is an old saying in the Talmud that goes:  “We don’t see things as they are, we see things as we are.”    I’m not sure, were I king, that I would find the promise that within sixty years and five, Ephraim shall be crushed.  After all, that is longer than most lifetimes in that era.  But God’s promise is protection according to the Covenant.  God will stand firm with his Chosen People.  God asks no less of us.  In asking us to stand firm, God asks us to enlarge our faith so that it includes the mystery of God’s own time, not according to our convenience.

Jesus must have startled his listeners as he unfavorably compared them to Sodom.  It is God’s perspective not our own in which He wants us to stand firm.  We can’t know what God has for us if we keep seeing things as we are – as if we are the center of the universe.  Jesus asks us to look to Him and through Him so that our perspective might come closer to how things are – God’s things, God’s time, God’s promise.


What have I been praying for or hoping for that is my agenda?  How can I stand firm in faith, hope and love of God rather than my own wish list?  Give that wish to God and be open to God’s unexpected gifts.

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