Liturgical Colour : Purple/Violet
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today we heard about the Lord Who chastised His people for their lack of faith, and for their refusal to believe, unless they see the signs and wonders, the miracles and all the supernatural things that they asked of the Lord Jesus to do and perform for them. They had no love for the Lord in their hearts, but instead, they only wanted to be awed and be satisfied of their curiosity.
They did not understand how God loves them so much and desires for them to be saved, from all of their shortcomings, their unworthiness, the wickedness of their sins and all of the evil and wicked things that had separated them from the fullness of God’s love and grace. But fortunately for us, our Lord loves us very greatly, and despite of our sins, He still wants to bring us out of our misery and suffering in sin, and lead us into eternal life.
However, what He needs from us is our commitment, our obedience and devotion to Him, the desire we need to have, the choice we need to make, in consciously walking on His paths towards salvation in God. This we can see in our Gospel today, where we heard about an official who came begging for Jesus our Lord to come and heal his son who was very sick and who was on the verge of death.
Jesus did not come with him, but instead, He just said simply that his son would live, and the official believed in him. He had faith in Jesus, and indeed, his son was healed and made whole again. Because of the faith which he had, and because of the commitment and devotion that he was willing to make to God, he has been granted his wishes, and God showed His favour upon him and his family.
This is contrasted to the attitude of the other people, which Jesus Himself showed in the very same Gospel passage, as they demanded Jesus to perform miracles and wonders, and even when He has done so many, many times, healing the sick and the dying, and even when He had raised the dead back to life, they still would not believe and doubted Him and refused to listen to Him.
This is an attitude which we cannot have, brothers and sisters in Christ, but rather, we should be more like the faithful official, having faith in God, even if we do not see His wonders and miracles right before our eyes. Our faith should not be founded upon awe and satisfaction of the flesh, but instead it should be based upon a genuine desire to love the Lord our God.
Today we commemorate the feast of St. Perpetua and St. Felicity, two great saints and martyrs, two great and holy women, whose life and examples can indeed be great inspiration for us, on how we ought to live our lives as the children and follower of our God. They were faithful and committed to the end, and they did not even fear death in the effort to keep themselves faithful to God.
They had different origins, St. Perpetua as a mother bearing a child, while St. Felicity was a slave, but both believed in God, and they met their end together having complete faith in God’s salvation. It was told that St. Perpetua converted to the faith and then when the Roman Emperor persecuted the faithful, despite the wishes of her father and others for her to reject her faith, but she remained committed and was imprisoned as a result.
The same devotion was shown by St. Felicity who was just a mere slave, and yet truly, through her faith in God, she had been made free from her true slavery, the slavery to sin and to the chains of the flesh. Through her dedication, commitment and courage, she had made herself worthy of God’s eternal life, salvation and redemption.
Brothers and sisters in Christ, shall we also seek to be like them, and do the same as what they have done? This means, shall we be truly faithful to the Lord in all things, and commit ourselves totally to Him? Let us no longer be separated from the love of God because of our disobedience, our reluctance and fear to follow Him, but instead, like the official, let us put our trust in Jesus, and commit ourselves to walk in His path and follow Him with all of our strength. God bless us all. Amen.