Did you ever spend hours preparing a speech about a topic you were really passionate about only to have it fall on deaf ears or at the very least get a mediocre review? Even though you were sure that the message would be well received and your listeners would surely give it the attention it warranted, but, alas, it just didn’t happen!
Well, we see this happening with Paul in his famous speech to the Athenians at the Areopagus as found in the first reading today from the Acts of the Apostles. Paul prepared, planned and delivered what he thought to be a great philosophical message about Jesus. The people did not want to hear anything about this Jesus and surely not in the manner that Paul was trying to tell them.
It was a hard lesson for Paul to learn. He was not a philosopher, but, rather a tent maker converted to Christianity through his encounters with Jesus. He was trying to be someone he wasn’t and it just wasn’t working. So often we too try to be what we think others want us to be which in the end finds us disappointed and disillusioned.
Like Paul, we are called to be followers of Jesus Christ and to preach his message of love, compassion and mercy. May we recommit ourselves this day to give witness to the great love God has for us in how we live, love and care for ourselves and others.
Theresa Secord is a Pastoral Associate at St. Agnes Parish, Louisville, Kentucky.