Brothers and sisters, I’m no healthcare expert, but a minister of the Word and the Sacraments who believes that we have someone to go to during our crisis. Yes, the Lord! He comforts us at this time of great uncertainties caused by COVID-19, as he consoled the Israelites through the prophet Hosea. Hosea encourages and instills hope and invites them to return to the Lord.
I want to share a true story of a woman who strengthened her faith and hope, struggling through uncertainties as she fought two dreaded diseases. She said, “Hot tears streamed down my face as I walked out of the doctor’s office. I cried, prayed and begged for healing and deliverance, but neither came. With each passing day, my faith, hope and joy dwindled as my health continued to decline.”
“I realized I was sinking. I didn’t know how I was going to bring hope, faith, and joy back into my life, but I knew I had to. And so, I started reading the sacred scripture. I asked God to change my heart. I prayed, 'Help me trust you, Lord. Give me faith to trust what your Word says. Give me hope to see beyond my circumstance and joy in simply knowing you are always with me. Help me, Lord. Please help me.' Over and over, I prayed these words, determined to see beyond my struggles — to walk away from the darkness of hopeless living into the light of a hope-filled future and then… God began to transform my mind, heart, and soul."
Perhaps, right now, many of us may be experiencing what she did. Well, the last part of the book of Hosea, offers hope to the Israelites who are struggling with uncertainties of their times. He calls them back to God and promises that if they did return to the Lord, their lives will flourish. God will heal them and love them with all His heart. Consequently, they will blossom like the lily, strike root like a cedar of Lebanon and put forth shoots splendid as the olive tree, and will produce grain and blossom like the vine of Lebanon.
Dear sisters and brothers, we are driven by faith, not by fear: trust, and not by uncertainties. Amid the uncertainties of COVID 19, trusting that God will transform our situations, let us pray like the woman in the story, “help us trust you, Lord. Give us faith to trust what your Word says. Give us hope to see beyond our circumstances and joy in simply knowing you are always with us. Help us, Lord. Please help us.”
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About Father Jilson Tom, C.S.C.
Father Jilson Tom, C.S.C. is from the Northeast India Province of Holy Cross. A native of Kerala, Father Jilson has been serving in a parish and school ministry since his ordination twelve years ago. He joins the Family Rosary team as an Assistant, while he works to study Pastoral Counseling in the Boston area. With a personal devotion to Mother Mary, Father Jilson is thrilled to be working to enhance family prayer through the Rosary. And if you ever need a listening ear or want to play a board game, Father Jilson’s your guy!