Friday, September 26, 2014

The Christ of God

Friday of the Twenty-fifth Week in Ordinary Time

By Melanie Rigney 

I have considered the task that God has appointed for the sons of men to be busied about. He has made everything appropriate to its time, and has put the timeless into their hearts, without man’s ever discovering, from beginning to end, the work which God has done. (Ecclesiastes 3:10-11)

Blessed be the Lord, my Rock! (Psalms 144:1)

Once when Jesus was praying in solitude and the disciples were with him, he asked them, “Who do the crowds say that I am?” They said in reply, “John the Baptist; others, Elijah; still others, ‘One of the ancient prophets has arisen.’ Then he said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter said in reply, “The Christ of God.” (Luke 9:18-20)

Lord, I beg You for the peace and faith to accept Your timing. Help me to trust more and stress less.

Timing, as they say, is everything.

In today’s Gospel reading, Jesus directs the disciples not to share what Peter has figured out: that Jesus is the Christ. It’s too soon; the prophecies must yet be fulfilled.

We’re all familiar with the first reading from Ecclesiastes: a time to be born, a time to die; a time to kill, a time to heal; a time to mourn, a time to dance. But perhaps that familiarity prevents us from listening to what comes next: the writer’s paean to God, confident that whether we ever understand it or not, He has “made everything appropriate to its time.”

The rush of the fall and coming winter has already begun. You’ll find Christmas displays peeking through the Halloween retail offerings, and perhaps you’re already making your family’s Thanksgiving and New Year’s plans. Is all that “appropriate to its time”?

Maybe. Maybe it’s not always bad to live at breakneck speed. Maybe He has blessed some of us with so many ministry opportunities and so much to do in His name that warp speed is the only way to serve Him. Can you imagine Dorothy Day or Blessed Teresa of Calcutta or even Pope Francis listening when people advise them to slow down? We are here but a little while, and as the saying goes, we can sleep when we are dead, confident in the knowledge we did all we could for the Lord while we were here.

Timing, as they say, is everything.

The Arlington Diocese tomorrow presents a terrific one-day seminar in Woodbridge titled, “Risk Jesus ‘14.” Please prayerfully consider slowing down long enough to attend. You’ll find more information on the Diocese Web site.

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