June 25, 2017 - 12th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year A
Saint Martin de Tours Catholic Church
There are many things we might be afraid of. We are afraid to profess our faith in public. We go pale when someone asks us to lead a prayer before a gathering.
We are afraid to ask someone not to use foul language or tell dirty jokes in our presence. We are afraid to tell our friends when their behavior is foolish.
We are afraid that the violence that is out there may one day visit us here. We are afraid of losing our jobs.
We are afraid to take the keys away from someone who’s had too much to drink.
We are afraid of growing old or getting sick. We are afraid of dying.
We are afraid of standing up to our kids and making them mind us.
We are afraid of the secrets that we keep.
Consider the time and energy we waste being afraid. We fear many things and those fears separate us from God.
That’s right, our fears separate us from God.
That’s why Jesus says, no less than three times in today’s gospel, do not be afraid.
Why so many warnings? Because God knows that if anything trips us up, it will be fear.
All through the gospels, the disciples are warned to not be afraid.
They are told not to fear at the empty tomb. They are told not to be afraid when Jesus walks on the water and calms the storm. They are told not to fear when Jesus appears in the locked room.
They are told not to worry about what to eat or what to drink or what to wear.
As we gather to celebrate the Eucharist, can we bring Jesus our fears? Can we place them at the foot of the altar and then leave them there?
If we do not, then we take them with us when we leave here. We take them with us back into the world. And they separate us from God.
With every hair on our heads counted, we are told that we are loved, we are cared for.
Even when the darkness comes, we have nothing to fear. The Lord is with us rescuing us from darkness and leading us into the Kingdom of Light.