Many of you have asked that I publish this blog the day before the feast or liturgical celebration. Today begins that experiment. What you read today will be a reflection on tomorrow's mass readings or other liturgical texts.
"Now the priests, the prophets, and all the people heard Jeremiah speak these words in the house of the LORD. (And) laid hold of him, crying, 'You must be put to death! Why do you prophesy in the name of the LORD.'" Jer 26: 7,9
We always want to kill thoughts and feelings that make us uncomfortable. Whether it is painful memories about our families or religious communities, or anxious and dark feelings about life as it is, we resist. This is exactly how the people to whom Jeremiah offered his prophecy reacted. They wanted to kill him, thinking that by striking down the messenger, the message itself might change or fade away. This tactic did not work in Jeremiah's time, nor will it work in ours.
There is too much injustice, hurt, anger and rage around for us to ignore or change it. The countless women and men with inadequate food or housing, the battered people in every society, the abused, neglected and despised stare at us from every corner of the globe and our memories. Unless we learn to welcome the word of truth, it will continue to haunt us during the day and in our dreams.
Thank God there was alwasy a remnant around Jeremiah who listened and opened themselves to change, and although they were not able to radically alter the course of people lives nor the society in which they lived, they did not deny what they saw and experienced, and relied on God to help them. As long as we do the same, God can and will help us.
Today, listen to the signs of the times.
Who or what has helped you not to deny the signs of the times?