The other day driving down a busy single-lane road, the car in front of me stopped to make a left turn, except it couldn’t because there was a long line, as far as I could see, of headlights streaming toward us, preventing that car from turning.
And, so I sat, waiting and noticing an ever-increasing line of cars behind me. And, then suddenly, one car swerved into the breakdown lane and sped past me, and then intermittently, one car after another. I confess I’ve done the same in the past, but this time, I waited, but not without temptation or uneasiness.
I think, at times, we face a similar situation when it comes to hearing the Word of God. Everything seems to be going along just fine, and then unexpectedly, and perhaps at a time when we feel we can least handle it, God’s Word challenges us.
What do we do? Do we wait a few moments or days, swerve around it, and not look back? That’s one option.
In fact, that’s what Jesus is confronting the scholars of the law about when He says, you have taken away the key of knowledge. So, what is this key of knowledge? It’s the Word of God, and in their time, it was their responsibility to read, pray, and teach God’s Word.
As Fr. Leo said yesterday, sin goes back as far as Adam and Eve, and so does the desire to shape God’s Word to our desires. It’s that misshaping of the Word into the law that Jesus is confronting the scholars.
Jesus tells them that they chose not to enter into that Word—they stopped others from trying to enter too. That’s the second thing we need to be aware of: how do our words and actions affect our families, friends, co-workers, and classmates? If we possess the gift of faith and the ability to read and reflect on the Word of God, how are we doing sharing this key of knowledge in the journey of life?
Sitting and waiting is difficult, not knowing how long or seeing others take an easier route. But being a follower of Jesus means that, at times, we need to stop when He stops. We need to wrestle with our wants and weaknesses, not alone, but with our Savior, just like the first disciples and countless generations of believers who have been willing to let Jesus lead, even when He pulls us aside to help us stay on the right path with Him.
May God bless you and your families this holy day as we seek to grow in patient trust in Jesus!
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About Father David Marcham
Reverend David S. Marcham is the Vice Postulator for the Cause of Venerable Patrick Peyton, and Director of the Father Peyton Guild, whose members pray for Father Peyton’s beatification and spread his message of the importance of Family Prayer. Prior to becoming a seminarian, Father David was a physical therapist and clinical instructor, serving hospital inpatients and outpatients throughout the greater Boston area for eleven years. In 1998 he heard the call to priesthood and was ordained in the Archdiocese of Boston in 2005. Father David grew up in Quincy, MA, and has fond memories of playing soccer, tennis and running track. You’re never without a friend when Father David is around, as he welcomes everyone into his circle with a smile on his face!