FAITH IS VERY IMPORTANT IN OUR LIVES
Faith is a grace that comes from God and faith brings peace and happiness of God to people. However, it is challenging for every one of us because we have been affected by many things.
Dear brothers and sisters,
Last Friday Bishop Stephen and the priests of Soc Trang areas gathered in Soc Trang’s parish for a retreat. It was very nice and I especially enjoyed the lecture given by Fr. Clemente. He spoke about faith, grace and the challenges that we face in society. He said, ‘Faith is a grace that comes from God and faith brings peace and happiness of God to people. However, it is challenging for every one of us because we have been affected by many things.’
Some months ago the Vietnamese government invited Nick Vujicic to Viet Nam. Nick Vujicic is a very famous man who, despite having no arms and legs, overcame the many difficulties that he had faced in his life. How could he overcome these difficulties? It was not easy for him because he had attempted suicide many times and also had lost faith in God. However, when he recognized the love of God and especially ever since he has faith in God he stopped doing the wrong things. Before this he often asked himself why God had brought him into this world and why was he given a body without arms and legs. Now that he is very famous and has a happy family he gave thanks to God because God had blessed him with a great life without arms and legs. After all, if he did have arms and legs he would not have become so famous.
Indeed, faith is a grace that God gives to every one of us but with challenges like Nick Vujicic. More than like that, before Abraham became a father of faith God tested him many times as St. Paul said in the second reading today: By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to leave his country and although he did not know where he was to go, he obeyed God without any questions. By faith he received power to generate even though he was past the normal age and by faith his wife Sarah was to have a baby. How could Abraham do it?
For me, it was possible for Abraham because he stayed awake and was always ready to answer God’s call. Actually, staying awake is very important as St Luke said in the Gospel today: God was very happy with the servants who waited for their master’s return from a wedding because they were ready to open the door for him when he knocks. Blessed are those servants whom the master finds vigilant on his arrival.
Brothers and sisters, every one of us has faith, love and hope but our faith is not strong enough like St. Peter said, ‘Lord increase our faith’ so that we can imitate Abraham and the good servants so that when God really wants them to stay awake to listen to God at any time, to open the door or to answer God’s question, they are ready. Moreover, may God help us to overcome the challenging events in our lives like Nick Vujicic who has learned to overcome the difficulties in his life; to believe in God and also to trust God especially in this year, the year of faith. May God bless every one of us and our families too.
Fr. Peter Thanh Ha