Feast of St. Paul of the Cross,
Founder of the Passionists
Exodus 17: 8-13
2 Timothy 3: 14 – 4: 2
Luke 18: 1-8
Have you ever been weary? Most of us have at one time or another. I vividly remember a period of about three years during which our family lost both parents, a sibling, and two beloved aunts. Most of us felt battered by the steady losses of people who were important in our lives. I suspect most families go through times like these, and times that are even more difficult. Times of Illness, failures in relationships or employment, disappointment in or betrayal by friends, personal losses and longtime struggles with personal sinfulness can truly wear us out.
The Scripture readings for today encourage us to turn to God with confidence when we find ourselves weary with life. The reading from Exodus reminds us that whenever we’re engaged in battle of any kind God will support us if only we keep our hearts turned toward Him. In the Gospel, Jesus uses the story of the unjust judge and the persevering widow to assure us that God, who is Our Father, will be even more faithful to us in our desire for God’s help with our personal struggles. Jesus tells us not to lose heart but to keep praying through our weariness. And, St Paul, in his letter to Timothy, encourages him and the community in Ephesus to remain faithful to what they have learned and believed; not to lose heart but to persevere in their witness to the truth of the Gospel.
Clearly, weariness is an experience that all true disciples of Jesus must deal with. In our Scriptures today we are encouraged by every reading to trust that God will be with us in our struggles and will lead us through them to the fullness of life with God.
Fr. Michael Higgins, C.P. is the director of Mater Dolorosa Passionist Retreat Center, Sierra Madre, California.