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(Part 6)


December 9, 2010

Today’s readings
Isaiah 41:13-20
Psalm 145:1-13
Matthew 11:11-15

Awesome is the Almighty God. We “speak of (His) fearsome power and attest to (His) great deeds.” (Ps 145:6). He is a God for whom nothing is impossible. Doing miracles is natural for such a God. He can “turn the desert into a marshland, and the dry ground into springs of water.” (Is 41:18b).

Now this Almighty God is the God whom we serve. This Almighty God is the One for whom we are instruments.

We know that in our life and mission in CFC-FFL, we face great challenges. And why not? We oppose Satan himself. And since we are called to do the very divine work of God, then Satan opposes and oppresses us. Thus it is but natural that those who truly serve God are those who will undergo persecution and suffering and pain.

Complicating matters is that we face this great enemy but we ourselves are very weak. We are sinful human flesh. We oftentimes give in to our human desires and priorities. We often are the obstacles to God using us in His power. Though we want to serve God and be used by Him, we often give in to the ravages of the flesh, the world and the devil.

In the midst of our frustration and perhaps even on the verge of giving up, we hear God assuring us, “For I am the Lord, your God, who grasp your right hand; It is I who say to you, ‘Fear not I will help you.’” (Is 41:13). God assures us of His help, as He intends to do His divine work through His human instruments. He not only encourages us, but He takes us by our hand. He raises us when we are down. He walks along with us on the right path. He leads us in the way we are to go. The power of His mighty hand passes on to our own right hand.

When God passes on His very strength and power, and we become willing and faithful instruments, then we will experience the awesome might of God. What God does, God will allow us to do. “I will make of you a threshing sledge, sharp, new, and double-edged, to thresh the mountains and crush them, to make the hills like chaff.” (Is 41:15).

Let us look at John the Baptist, who prepared the way for Jesus. Who was John? He was Elijah (Mt 11:14). He was destined to go “in the spirit and power of Elijah” (Lk 1:17a). To do what? “To turn the hearts of fathers toward children and the disobedient to the understanding of the righteous, to prepare a people fit for the Lord.” (Lk 1:17b). That sounds very much like our work of evangelization and family renewal!

But here is the surprising thing. Jesus says that “among those born of women there has been none greater than John the Baptist; yet the least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.” (Mt 11:11). John’s greatness lay in his work of preparing the way for Jesus, as he announced the imminent coming of the kingdom. Now this is our task as well! We do a worldwide work of evangelization in order to prepare the way for the second coming of Christ and the establishment of his eternal kingdom. If God uses us in this way, manifesting His power and strength in our work, then we, including the least among us, would truly do great things.

We know we can trust in God and in His assurance. “The Lord is trustworthy in every word, and faithful in every work.” (Ps 145:13b). So we look not to our weakness, but to the very power and strength of God. In fact, it is precisely in our nothingness and our emptiness that God is able to fill us and use us. We are nothing, but God is everything. We face an awesome work, but we simply trust in the God who uses us for His purpose. “Fear not, O worm Jacob, O maggot Israel; I will help you, says the Lord” (Is 41:14).

We move on, knowing that our God is now our strength.

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