A Reflection on the 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time – November 14, 2021
Reading I: Daniel 12:1-3
Responsorial Psalm: 16:5, 8, 9-10, 11
Reading II: Hebrews 10:11-14, 18
Gospel: Mark 13:24-32
In the book of Daniel, God is prophesying through the words of Daniel. At this point in the scriptures, Daniel is in exile in the land of the Babylonians. The Israelites are in bondage and are suffering much. Daniel tells them that this life is not the end of the story, but that the story of their lives continues into the next.
God is giving his people hope in the future of their existence – Heaven. Michael, the Archangel, will battle the evil forces of darkness and defeat them in a monumental battle for human souls. The victory belongs to those faithful that will have their names written in “the book of Life.” Glory and peace will fill those who have persevered to the end, but eternal punishment to the unfaithful. (Rev 20:15)
You and I have been destined to be with God for all eternity through Jesus Christ our Lord, that is how we were created. (Eph 1:12-14). Our job on this earth is to have courage and perseverance in the face of so much suffering so that we can be glorified with him. (Rom 8:17). How and where do we find such strength to “fight the good fight” and receive our crown of glory? (2 Tim 4:6-8) By tapping into the very power and life of God himself – his GRACE! God’s grace is capable of empowering us to accomplish all that he desires for us . . . holiness, faith, trust, courage, perseverance, wisdom, patience, forgiveness, and the list goes on and on.
Our primary means of obtaining this grace has been instituted by our Lord before he ascended into heaven, and that is . . . through the Sacraments. Every Sacrament imparts upon us that supernatural power of sanctifying grace. This is our weapon, this is our strength, and this is our SALVATION! That is why the Church has been this instrument of dispensing grace since its inception when water and blood flowed from the side of Christ on the cross at the piercing of his heart by the Roman soldier. The Church is the means of salvation that Christ has appointed for us to obtain that grace sufficient for our salvation. For most of us as Catholics, that means we are baptized and have received the Sacraments of Reconciliation, Eucharist, and Confirmation. Since baptism and confirmation are “one time only,” we are left with confessing our sins and receiving our Lord and God in the Eucharist as our “daily” weapons to help us grow in power to live a life of holiness. My challenge to you is that if you are finding it difficult to get through each day because of sorrow, depression, anxiety and despair, then tap into the life-giving power of the Sacrament of Confession and attend daily Mass as often as possible. Pray during Mass that the Lord fill you with his spirit and power to conquer your “demons” and TRUST that he will do it. Amend your life to live according to his commandments, and his promise is that you will find joy and peace amidst all the chaos and suffering. Yes, the suffering may remain, but it will not cause you to lose hope or to despair. Make that effort to put worship and love of God first in your life, and he, being faithful, will grant you the peace you desire.
Philippians 4:6-7 “Have no anxiety about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, will keep your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Author: Henry Avila