My new way of describing “faith in works” is “doing faith.” For me, that is the major theme of the readings we are given for this Sunday. So how do we go about “doing faith”? I like verbs that end in –ing! They are signs that the work is in progress, is evolving, is dynamic, and continues. In other words, it is very ACTIVE! And it has great possibilities—Providential unfolding’s!
In a similar way, Oscar Romero preached: “When we leave Mass, we ought to go out the way Moses descended Mt. Sinai: with his face shining, with his heart brave and strong to face the world’s difficulties.” How well does that describe me? Us?
Isaiah uses the image of a ”face like flint” suggesting that our faces not only shine but that they have the capacity, the potential to set things on fire, to radiantly inspire, to put fire into our whole being. What does it look like and feel like to be on fire for God? To be passionate about our vocation, our purpose in life?
In Mark’s Gospel, Jesus tells his followers: “Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up the cross, and follow me.” None of the verbs in Jesus’ invitation are particularly appealing to us—deny self, take up the cross, follow Jesus? We have so many crosses that are part of being alive today. There are even more in being faithful to the gospel. What Jesus asks us to do is often very controversial. It takes brave hearts, courage, and strength to act as Jesus did. It takes the same to give voice to injustices today. How do you name the suffering that is part of life today? How do you handle it? How do you advocate for the suffering? What is your way of doing faith? Listen especially to our Prayers of Intercession this weekend. Listen to the words of the music we sing. Here is a sample: