Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross
Sometimes it’s hard to understand why the God of the Old Testament was so angry and punishing, while the Son of God in the New Testament seemed more reasonable and empathetic. The bronze snake on the pole reminded the Israelites of their lack of loyalty to God, just as the Holy Cross reminds us of God’s willingness to help us overcome sin.
In today’s readings, the word “steadfast” in the Psalms is important. Just like spouses promise to be steadfast in sickness and health, we should ask ourselves if we are staying faithful to God no matter what challenges or joys we face. God’s Kingdom belongs entirely to Him and He cannot be replaced like an elected politician. The Israelites complained about their food, but the bronze snake on the pole served as a warning to be steadfast, to let go of pride and unfaithfulness.
The Holy Cross takes the message of the bronze snake to a higher level. It reminds us that God sacrificed His only son to teach us about faith, humility, obedience, and the belief in eternal life.
Jack Dermody is the editor of the CrossRoads bulletin for the Passionist Alumni Association and a member of the Migration Commission for Holy Cross Province. He lives in Glendale, Arizona.