Several months ago, I was making a mild attempt to listen to the overpowering political discourse, if it can be called that. As I heard one awful thing after another, I found myself seeking for something to hold onto, some hope or reassurance that things wouldn’t get as bad as some thought. That is when I remembered–Christ said that He would never allow anything to overcome….Oh. Yeah.
Christ promised that nothing would overcome the Church. Of the United States of America, Christ made no comment. He didn’t prophesy that this nation would come in several centuries and would be indomitable. Throughout Scripture, we hear about how the Lord will remain and endure. Throughout history, we see nation after nation fall. There are uprisings and reformations, divisions and unifications. All is changing and all is temporal.
Except the Lord.
He remains. He endures. He is steadfast. He is “I AM WHO AM.” He is existence itself. And He promised that His Church would remain until the end of time. He promised persecution, the cross, and many difficulties, too. But, He would always remain.
I don’t happen to think our nation is on the verge of dissolving. However, I do think it is clear that we need prayer and that we need the Lord. While I am fully aware of the separation of Church and state, I am also aware that one of the longest running institutions is the Catholic Church. It isn’t such because the leaders have been flawless; on the contrary, they were deeply flawed from the very beginning. The Gospels are replete with accounts of the fumbles and foibles of the Apostles. If the Church has not endured because of the perfection of Her members, it must endure because of the perfection of the Lord. Continue reading “As Promised, He Remains”
A phrase I have found myself repeating over the last few months is, “A lot can happen in a year.” It has come up when reflecting on different friends and how their lives have changed. Sometimes it relates to jobs or relationships or babies. And, sometimes, when I’m being a bit more pessimistic and thinking about my own life, I’ll add to the end of that phrase, “…or not change.”
Yet, mostly, I utter this phrase in hope. Whatever state my life is in now, in a year, it could be very different. Who knows what the Lord has planned for tomorrow? or next week? or next month? His promises and blessings for this next year will definitely be different from what I imagine, but they will continue to change and transform me.
Sometimes change can be a bit scary. And at other times, change can be prayed for and longed for. I have numerous desires in my heart that I long for the Lord to fulfill. But I also can be led to worry about how He will fulfill them and if I am actually ready for Him to fulfill them. Whatever my current feelings may be, a lot can and will happen in the next year.
This week we are wrapping up one liturgical year and preparing for the advent of another. Now is a good time to consider how the Lord has poured out His blessings upon our lives. The past year of grace has changed and transformed us. What are specific ways the Lord has caused us to grow? What encounters have we had with the Lord and how have they changed us? How have they not changed us as much as they ought? The next year will continue to do the same in new and unexpected ways. As we sit on the cusp of a new year, let us pray to be filled with a deeper desire to enter into salvation history in a new way. May this next year not leave us unchanged. Come, Lord Jesus, reign in my life. Let a lot happen in this next year.
In one moment, I can give you more than you are able to desire.
(Jesus to St. Faustina, Diary 1169)
to turn hearts of stone into hearts of flesh…
to redeem that which was lost…
to seek after the wandering…
to give new life to the weary…
to bind and heal all wounds… Continue reading “Promises”