On a winter evening, a pastor and a member of his parish were sitting beside a fireplace chatting about life. The pastor was trying to interest the parishioner in giving his spiritual life a higher priority. The man insisted he could be a good person without the mass and other requirements of the Church...
The priest was silent for a while. Then he put his tongs into the fire, picked up a lump of blazing coal, and held it away from the fire. In silence, both watched the glowing coal lose its color as it slowly turned to ash. The parishioner got the message. A life lived away from God – the Fire of Life… will lose the fire of His Spirit living and burning within.
We remember Jesus lamenting over the City of Jerusalem because it failed to remain connected with God. God had chosen Israel as His people. He had chosen them as His beloved and accompanied them.
He had wiped out their enemies. He had blessed them with judges, kings, and prophets. He had provided them a place to worship.
But Israel, God’s own people, were no longer delighted in being God's distinctive people. They had allowed their hearts to grow hard. They grew stubborn and complacent in their ways. They had no room for One who had come to fulfill their Law and prophecies. They rejected and abused the Anointed One of the Lord.
The story of Jerusalem could well be our own. We have been chosen and loved by the Lord. He has brought us safely through many dangers, sicknesses, and accidents. When everything seemed lost, He has been our refuge. He has been the glowing fire that kept us going. When we felt like quitting and escaping from realities, He has held us under His Wings.
Like Israel and the Jews of Jesus’ day, have we become disconnected from God? Have we forgotten that we are His chosen people, His beloved?
Have we forgotten the times when He was with us through difficult challenges in our lives? Have we left the fire that kept us burning?
Perhaps, it’s time to wake up from slumber. God wants us back.
Let us run to Him, for apart from the fire of God’s Spirit, our spiritual lives cannot survive. So, stay near the Fire... keep burning.
To view Rosary prayer and Mass streaming live, please visit our Facebook page at 11:30 am EST, Monday – Friday. Please invite your loved ones to join us too! (You don't need a Facebook account to view.)
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!