Do not be afraid.
Jesus repeats this three times in today’s Gospel reading.
Easier said than done.
A particularly wise friend once said to me that the fear you carry in life depends entirely upon the size of your faith. If your faith is small and meagre, there is a lot to fear, because that is also the size of the God you believe in. If, on the other hand, your faith is mighty and strong then so is your God.
Faith is a relationship between you and God. Like all relationships, there’s give and take, trust and love, fear and doubt. God is better at relationships than we are; he always believes in us. God is steadfast in his love, and he doesn’t let us down, despite what it may feel like in difficult times.
Jeremiah tells us that “the Lord is at my side, a mighty hero.” Fear is the villain in this story, the one that gets in the way of a strong and loving relationship, the villain that puts us on the path to conflict and pain. With God as our hero, we can turn our back on fear and trust in God to protect and guide us. Not all heroes wear capes.
If my wise friend is correct and the size of my God depends on the size of my Faith, then that’s what I need to work on in this relationship. In order to defeat fear, I have to my strengthen my faith.
How do I do this? The answer is clear: prayer. Jesus said it, Pope Francis says it, and all the Saints. We have to pray; pray when we are close to God and pray when it feels like our words are lost in the air. He is always listening.
If we have faith in the power of prayer, and the strength of our God, there really is little to fear.
Today's readings: Jeremiah 20:10-13 Psalm 68 Romans 5:12-15 Matthew 10:26-33
Source: Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary TimeFeatured , This Sunday