Action of Hope
Even though good times come and you feel like they fill you with abundant joy that could never end, or be compared with. Soon enough, something goes wrong, making you forget that feeling of joy, plunging you into darkness. Last night on my drive home from school, I had the rare opportunity to see the two sides of the sky, one which revealed a beautiful, enrapturing sunset, with the most pale and rainbow assortment of colours. On the other side, there was blackness, dark clouds turning into night. As I headed towards home, the sunset was behind me, and the dark clouds of night became the central focus. However, knowing from experience, the new day will bring the sun, and the next following night, there will be another wonderful sunset. I've always detested driving in the dark, as you can't see the beauty of the sun, but when the cloud coverage leaves, you can then see a wonderful assortment of stars. The world around us is a perfect example of how even in the darkest (literally) of times, beauty can come, teach us to move forward, and face the challenges ahead so to see the sunrise that fast approaches. Jesus on the cross offers us this same experience of hope, to fight in faith and embrace God's will.
Today's First Reading states:'Take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to care for the church of God which he obtained with the blood of his own Son. I know that after my departure fierce wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; and from among your own selves will arise men speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after them. Therefore be alert, remembering that for three years I did not cease night or day to admonish every one with tears. And now I commend you to God and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up and to give you the inheritance among all those who are sanctified. I coveted no one's silver or gold or apparel. You yourselves know that these hands ministered to my necessities, and to those who were with me. In all things I have shown you that by so toiling one must help the weak, remembering the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, `It is more blessed to give than to receive.'" And when he had spoken thus, he knelt down and prayed with them all. And they all wept and embraced Paul and kissed him, sorrowing most of all because of the word he had spoken, that they should see his face no more. And they brought him to the ship' (Acts 20:28-38).
In today's reading, we hear about Paul, talking about Jesus' death and the wolves that would come. After the wolves, there will be more trials, more men with harsh words, those that oppose. It's the human life, and God brings us though this with Jesus at the centre. St. Augustine wrote, "Hope has two beautiful daughters. Their names are anger and courage; anger at the way things are, and courage to see that they do not remain the way they are". Though there may be elements of doubt and fear, there is always a new day, and a new sunrise which God brings us to become the better version of ourselves. take some time to ask God to help you have courage to face the trails like Paul.
Today's prayer comes from 'Catholic Online', St. Augustine's prayer for action in hope:
For Your mercies' sake, O Lord my God, tell me what You are to me. Say to my soul: "I am your salvation." So speak that I may hear, O Lord; my heart is listening; open it that it may hear You, and say to my soul: "I am your salvation." After hearing this word, may I come in haste to take hold of you. Hide not Your face from me. Let me see Your face even if I die, lest I die with longing to see it. The house of my soul is too small to receive You; let it be enlarged by You. It is all in ruins; do You repair it. There are thing in it, I confess and I know, that must offend Your sight. But who shall cleanse it? Or to what others besides You shall I cry out? From my secret sins cleanse me, O Lord, and from those of others spare your servant. Amen.