Thursday 21 May 2020

About Today Readings

Acts 18:1-8. The Lord has revealed to the nations his saving power – Psalm 97(98):1-4. John 16:16-20.

Your sorrow will turn to joy

If we are sometimes bewildered by the teachings of our faith, today’s readings give us hope – but in strange ways, perhaps matching our confusion. We imagine Paul in perpetual preaching mode: an evangelical machine. But on weekdays in Corinth, he worked as a tent-maker among professional colleagues. His evangelism forever pressing, he faced everyday practical demands of necessity like anyone else. This makes his extraordinary achievement – the communication of Christ’s revelation to the universal world – even more heroic.

Convincing people that eternal salvation was offered to sinful humanity was a time-consuming occupation. He never gave up. Imagine how comforting must have been the minutiae of stitching cloths together to make tents, compared with the risk of being stoned, flogged and imprisoned for his belief. But Jesus reminds us in the Gospel that grief will be turned to joy. Lord, make of us a multitude of Pauls.

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