Saturday, 30 January 2021 : 3rd Week of Ordinary Time (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Green or White (Saturday Mass of Our Lady)

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, all of us are reminded today that faith is truly important for each and every one of us, and all of us need to have faith in God and trust in Him no matter what. We need to entrust ourselves to Him and do not fear what may come our way, no matter how difficult things may be. Yes, it is natural for us to be fearful and to be afraid, to think about what may happen to us and all other things, but in the end, we must hold on firmly to the belief that God will triumph with us in the end.

In our Scripture readings today we are presented with the story of faith as how it had happened throughout the history of salvation. We heard from the first reading today the story of Abraham and Sarah, who had been expecting a child from God, promised even in their old ages. Earlier on, Abraham had followed the Lord and responded to His call when he left behind his ancestral home and went to the land pointed out by the Lord to be his own land and the land to be possessed by his descendants.

God made a Covenant with Abraham, and promised him that he would be the father of many nations. Initially, Abraham also did doubt for a little as he took a slave named Hagar and had a son with her, named Ishmael. But God again reassured Abraham as well as his wife Sarah, that it was their son who would become the father of many nations just as God had promised. Initially Sarah herself was also skeptical, laughing when the Lord disguised as visitors came to Abraham to tell him of the news.

But eventually the Lord fulfilled all that He has promised and Isaac was born, the promised child that came to be as promised. And when God tested Abraham by asking him to bring his son Isaac to Mount Moria and offer him as a sacrifice, Abraham, as saddened and sorrowful as he might have been, obeyed the Lord and entrusted himself to Him, bringing his son and doing everything just as the Lord had said. The Lord interfered after having seen the faith of Abraham, and reassured Abraham once again that for his enduring faith, he would be blessed above all.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, from that reading therefore we have heard of the great faith of our forefathers, all those who put their complete faith in the Lord. And in our Gospel passage today we heard the account about the disciples and the Lord who were in the middle of the lake and whose boat was beset by a great storm with strong winds and waves. The disciples, many of whom were fishermen themselves, knew the danger and were very afraid of what would happen to them.

They feared that the great storm would destroy and sink their boat, and then all of them would perish. That was why they panicked and begged the Lord frantically to do something for them. They were all frightened and certainly feared death, and they had little faith in the Lord. The Lord, Who was then sleeping, woke up and calmed the storm, the waves and the wind, which immediately ceased and everything became still.

The Lord rebuked and chided His disciples for their lack of faith and trust in Him, in giving in to their fears and uncertainties. Again, although it is natural for us to feel afraid and to be uncertain, but this tells us that we must never allow ourselves to be controlled by those fears. We must not allow those fears from controlling us and our choice of actions.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, today therefore we are all called to reflect on what it means for us to have faith in God. Is our faith in the Lord so shallow that we have not entrusted ourselves completely to His care? Have we even begun to trust the Lord more rather than worrying and trusting more in our own power? These are the questions that we should ask ourselves as we reflect on our paths going forward in life.

May the Lord continue to guide us and strengthen us that we may live ever more faithfully with each and every passing moments. May we draw ever more to Him and be inspired by the examples of our holy predecessors in faith, now and always. Amen.

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