Sunday August 14
Following God regardless of the consequences
  • Jeremiah 38:4-6,8-10
  • Psalm 40:2-4,18
  • Hebrews 12:1-4
  • Luke 12:49-53

Today’s readings speak of the consequences of following the Lord and the persecution we may face. Through the centuries all over the world many men and women have faced opposition, trials and even death because of their faith in the Lord. Their faith in God gave them strength to face anything the world threw at them — be it insults, torture and even death.

The Church has canonized many saints — many men and women that stand out as shining examples of holiness and goodness. As Catholics, we can find comfort and strength knowing that many holy people struggled and died because of their faith, but God took care of them even to the end.

In the year 286 in Egypt, St. Timothy and St. Maura, a couple married for only 20 days, were tortured, and then killed for their faith in the Lord. For 10 days they prayed together, sang hymns, and encouraged each other as they suffered for Christ. When one was weak, the other would be strong, reminding the other of what Christ suffered. When they died, they inspired their torturer, who was converted and became a Christian. He himself was later martyred. Throughout the history of the church, there are so many stories and testimonies of saints, who can inspire us to follow Christ no matter the cost.

Today’s second reading from the letter to the Hebrews speaks of running the race marked out for us. Hebrews 12:1-2 says, “And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith.”

The Lord Jesus is the one who gives us faith to believe in Him and it is He who sharpens or fine tunes our faith and makes it greater. It is because of this faith in the Lord that we can finish this race of life. No matter the struggles or the persecution we may face, when we believe in the Lord, He will give us the grace to go through anything.

In the Gospel proclamation, the Lord Jesus explains the consequences we may face for being his disciple and what we can expect from a world that does not believe in Him. He is explaining the division people will go through when they believe in God.

Believers may face persecution and violence from the people of their own families or household. He wants to prepare His followers to the fact that a life as a disciple is not an easy one. They may be hated by their own family. Through all this though, the Lord is telling his disciples to be firm in their faith. Today, the Lord is calling us to deepen our faith in Him. To know Him more and to love Him more, no matter what the cost is.

Prayer: Abba Father, I pray for the faith to stand for You no matter what. Give me the grace to be your witness. Amen.

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