“If you are what you should be, you would set the whole world on fire.” – St. Catherine of Siena
By now we are all quite aware of the Supreme Court ruling on same-sex marriage. I think this is the first time in my life that I’ve been nervous about being Catholic (I am so blessed because so many of our fellow Catholics abroad are not so lucky). I’m nervous because I dislike conflict, and this issue is all about conflict. This is the sort of topic that ticks off just about anyone you ask, and some of us Catholics are getting sought out and called all kinds of horrible stuff. Just having evidence of your Catholicism on Facebook is enough to make people pick fights.
It makes me want to abandon all social media, run to the country and live a life of simple anonymity. Like the Amish, but with better plumbing and all the electricity.
But that’s not the answer, is it? Jesus told us from the beginning that things would get tough. People we love and respect will become harsh and maybe even cruel. We will be mocked, taunted and insulted. We may lose connections with people who disagree with us and no longer want to be in our company. It will be hard.
“I have come to set the earth on fire, and how I wish it were already blazing!” – Luke 12:49
We typically dislike what is hard. We will avoid it, ignore it, or try to change it. We live in a world that tells us if we don’t like the current teachings/laws/practices that we should change them to meet our desires.
The problem is, some people are trying to change what is unchangeable: God, who is Love and Truth.
They don’t see God as Truth. Maybe they don’t see God at all.
But we as Catholics know that God is Truth. We don’t change God to fit our wants or to make our lives more comfortable. We change ourselves to conform to God.
Even when it’s hard.
Even when it’s scary.
Even when it’s radical.
People may react with acceptance, while others react with anger and indignation. Luckily (for now), we are free to practice our religion even if it makes others angry. It may not make us popular or liked or praised by society, but that’s not what we’re here for anyway.
We’re here to be God’s love to the world. It ain’t always easy.
Good thing we’re not doing it on our own – God gives us what we need to carry out his will. We just gotta keep trusting and hoping. God always wins.
14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place,15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. – Ephesians 6:14-18