5th AUGUST 2021

THE JOURNEY TO FREEDOM -


THURSDAY, EIGHTEENTH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME

 

Num 20:1-13;                         Ps 95:1-2, 6-9;                        Mt 16:13-23


  

PRAYER AND HUMILITY LEAD TO FREEDOM

 

Caesarea Philippi was a predominantly Gentile city, north of Palestine, where idolatry was prevalent. It is here that Jesus asks the two famous questions to his apostles. “Who do people say the Son of Man is?” and “Who do you say I am?” We too live in a world gravitating towards idolatry, full of selfishness, hatred, malice, consumerism, etc. In truth, some type of idol worship is prevalent in all of us. It can be uprooted only with the grace of God. For this, one needs to answer the same two questions: Who do I say Jesus is? and Who is Jesus for me?

 

Our personal relationship with Jesus helps us grow in the knowledge of self. We become more aware of the idols we carry within, the various things we value more than the Lord and his gospel. This relationship with the Lord is built through a life of prayer. It is a prayer that brings all that is within to the surface.

 

Sometimes, the measure of our fragility and the extent of our unfaithfulness may shock us, but this awareness, if acknowledged humbly, is the beginning of something new. When we face our misery in all humility, the light of Christ draws us closer to himself. Only in him is our weakness transformed into strength. Then we can say with Paul, “when I am weak, I am strong”.

 

There will be times that we will not be able to accept that we can be so fragile. Pride has deep roots in the human heart. So that we may not be lost because of our blindness, God may be slightly tough with us, as Jesus was with Peter. He may permit moments of trial without a clear understanding of his will. At such times, let us persevere in prayer. Faithfulness in prayer will help us rise when we fall, keep fighting when we are weak. Humility will help us rise to a new life of peace and freedom, devoid of the idols that chain us to sin.

 


Response: O that today you would listen to his voice! Harden not your hearts.


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