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Saturday, August 13, 2016

The Hard Sayings of Jesus

"Do you think that I have come to establish peace on the earth? No, I tell you, but rather division." Lk 12:51

When Jesus tells us that the “good news” he speaks is a hard word, a demanding word and one that will sometimes bring about division between and among families, we are always unnerved. What could this talk about division mean? Are we not called to be one with each other as a sign of God's unity?

In the film, The King’s Speech, the Duke of York is a terrible stutterer. Though born to nobility, the man who would eventually be known as King George VI, cannot even read a speech on the radio. Battered by his father to try harder, and to speak more slowly, his stammer only gets worse, but what is most difficult for him is the ridicule he is subjected to, even as an adult, by his own brother.

Exhausted and ashamed by his struggles, the future king submits himself to the “cleansing” and “purifying” skill and friendship of a commoner. Slowly he gains some control of his stammer and emerges humble and grateful, and able to play a key role in leading England through the Second World War. This is, of course, exactly what the Lord did for his first disciples and continues to do for us today.

The body of Christ is one but has many members, each with a distinct role without which the whole cannot function completely and integrally. All of us are important in the eyes of God. Each of has a dignity that can never be taken away from us. When we forget or ignore these basic truths, we must be cleansed and purified.

Today, ask not to be afraid of the fire of God.

Have you been refined like gold in the furnace for the service of God's reign?

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