Divine Dialogue of God with the Soul
By Mother Marie Julie, SCMC
My Dear Good People,
We pray for all of our Friends who are suffering in the terrible heat these past weeks. May God send relief, especially to those who live alone and have no advocates.
As we continue to journey with Jesus through His public life in the Sunday Gospels, we can’t help but be surprised at the radicalism of His message. Love your enemies; Unless you eat My Flesh and drink My Blood; Take up your cross daily and follow Me–these words are indeed hard sayings, but we never hear Him say, Wait, I’m just speaking figuratively. What I really meant was…. No, He is serious about what it means to commit to His Way.
Today’s Gospel is no different. He is ready to send his twelve apostles (two-by two) out into the fray with His message in hand, and, to tell the truth, not much more. He tells them, Take nothing for the journey but a walking stick–no food, no sack, no money in [your] belts…no second tunic (Mark 6:7-13). Now that’s radical. Really, it isn’t even sensible. But He wanted them to depend on the goodness of His Father and of those who would receive the Word they would bring to them.
In 2021, that wouldn’t work very well. But there are ways He expects us to live today that are just as radical, though the details are different. If we are to call ourselves Christian, we have to be willing to turn a deaf ear to the shrieking voices that tell us what’s important–honor, prestige, a fat bank roll, high positions, real estate, and popularity with the people who know how to influence people. He asks us to think of others before we think of ourselves–even rather than thinking of ourselves. He wants us to be able to lay our head on the pillow at night and say, I lived for You today, Jesus. I made some enemies, I lost that promotion, I gave up what I thought really mattered to me, but I did it Your way. I stood up for what I know is right amidst a crowd of people who tried to convince me otherwise, and I did it for You, because I know it was the right thing to do. And the suffering I bore today without complaining, that was for You, too, because You asked me to. It’s not easy, Lord, but it’s what I have chosen because You have chosen Me to be your own. And I wouldn’t change a thing. All I ask is that You keep me safe and continue to give me strength to be counter cultural, to give and not to count the cost. Because I am a Christian and the whole world needs the Hope Your Gospel brings us.
It may seem that it’s not going to get easier, my dear People, at least not in our lifetime. Our civilization has gone so far afield of the foundations on which we once stood that it will take a miracle to get us back to the Truth. But there are, after all, miracles that are shoring up the foundations and promise to pave the way: people like yourselves who wake up each day with a heart for God; people like you who show in so many ways that God is real, and you know Him well. (I recently saw a bumper sticker: God IS real: I just spoke to Him this morning!) Maybe we shouldn’t be doubtful that the Gospel is bringing our world back to life. The signs are there, right here in my neighborhood and yours, right in your own house. Today as we think about the twelve going out two-by-two to carry the message of Jesus to the ‘unchurched,’ we should take courage from their radicalism; two thousand years later, we too are radical. We may have money in our belts and a sandwich in our sack, but the way we live just doesn’t make sense to some who know us–but we are making a difference.
God bless you for daring to do it His way. For you and for me, there is no other way.
We love you.