Monday, November 23, 2015

A Kingdom That Shall Never Be Destroyed

By Melanie Rigney

“… the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that shall never be destroyed or delivered up to another people; rather, it shall break in pieces all these (other) kingdoms and put an end to them, and it shall stand forever.” (Daniel 2:44)

Give glory and eternal praise to him.  (Daniel 3:59b)

Then he said to them, “Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be powerful earthquakes, famines, and plagues from place to place; and awesome sights and mighty signs will come from the sky.” (Luke 21:10-11)

Lord, may I have the faith and courage to follow You through the worst of times.

We had a couple incidents last week where I work; nothing along the lines of Paris or Mali or Beirut, but a bit unsettling all the same. In one case, a coworker saw a package deposited on a major thoroughfare; an investigation turned up nothing dangerous. In the other, a less than focused security guard phoned me to help an unidentified member of the public who entered our building, even though the person would have been turned away at the door if procedures had been followed.

Strange times. But are they stranger than any other times? Perhaps. Perhaps not.

Daniel interpreting Nebuchadnezzar's dream.  By W. A. Spicer [Public domain],
via Wikimedia Commons. It's 
In today’s first reading, King Nebuchadnezzar, who ruled and died more than five hundred years before Christ’s birth, has an unsettling dream. Daniel is among those called to interpret the dream and shares with the king a vision in which the Lord’s kingdom trumps all others and lasts forever.

And today, despite terrorist threats and disputes about what our stance on accepting refugees should be and our concerns, justified or not, about our own safety and those we love, that vision remains real. Cults and cells and sects and, yes, even countries may be destroyed. None of them can keep us from God’s promise of the kingdom if we refuse to let fear and hatred creep into our souls. None of them can keep us from God’s promise of the kingdom if we love as He loves, regardless of how unsettling our times may be.

Read the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Migration’s statement on Syrian refugees. Discuss it with your prayer group.

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