Rol Rolheiser, OMI, says that Christians speak of love, peace, and unity, but based on the daily news and our own experiences of life, how can this be a reality? The world is so polarized, the gap between the rich and the poor is ever wider, there is so much hatred (just go to Facebook), millions of people are displaced due to war and natural calamities, and governments worldwide do not bring confidence.
Hence, instead of optimism and positive thinking, we Christians rely on faith and hope. What is hope in the most layman’s term? In the short term, “things don’t look good”; in the long term, “we’re in safe hands!”
In the Gospel, John the Beloved simply saw the burial clothes and the cloth that covered the head. For one who has faith and hope, John believed that Jesus had risen from the dead.
Hence in each Mass, three reflections on faith in God:
- Faith challenges to “Let Life Happen.” As human beings, we always want to be in control. Then when things do not turn the way we want them, we experience fear and faith. Maybe these are times God reminds us that He is in control and to relax, surrender, not overthink, and accept.
- Martin Luther King, Jr said, “Only in dark can you see the stars.” No situation is so hopeless. There are always blessings and something to hope for. I remember a trip to the underground river in Palawan. The tour guide reminded us that even in the deepest recesses of the earth, there is still so much life.
- Luke 1:37: Faith does not make things easy, it makes them possible. The Christmas story is about four lives who were able to say yes to God. Mary, Joseph, Zechariah, and Elizabeth knew that with God nothing is impossible.
As Julian of Norwich assures us: In the end, all will be well, and all will be well, and every manner of being will be well. As the poet, Oscar Wilde quipped: If it isn’t well then it still isn’t the end! God is real and faith works!