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Earthquakes turn us to God

 

fr bel san luis - word alive

THE day after the 6.1 magnitude earthquake that hit Luzon, as I entered to celebrate Mass in our church, I was surprised to see so many people showing up in the church!

When we are in mortal danger, we turn to God. But as a spiritual writer once said, “God is not a fire engine that we run to him only when there’s fire in our life.”

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This reminds me, too, of the story of an employee who was trapped in a high rise building in Makati when a powerful earthquake struck Metro Manila some years ago. So scared, he ducked under a table and waited.

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As the temblor subsided, he frantically ran down the staircase out of the building. Asked by the media people what he did while he was under the table, he said: “I’m not a very religious person but I prayed all the prayers I knew. When I ran out, I even prayed the Prayers Before and After Meals!”

Let’s be prepared at all times – spiritually, physically, environmentally.

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In the gospel of this second Sunday of Easter, the apostle Thomas manifested a lack of trust after the resurrection of the Lord when he said, “Unless I see the scars in his hands…I refuse to believe” (Jn 20,24). And because of his doubt, the term “doubting Thomas” was coined in the English dictionary to describe doubters and skeptics.

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Thomas got his wish when the risen Lord called him by name and mildly censured him thus: “Put your finger here, and look at my hands. Touch and feel my side. Cease to doubt, but believe!” (Jn 20,27).

Confronted with the real person, there was no more need for Thomas to touch, to feel Christ’s side. Instead he fell on his knees and cried: “You are my Lord and my God.” By the way, these are the words of faith we profess at the Consecration in the Mass.

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Supernatural faith, as St. Paul writes to the Romans, is when you don’t have any evidence, but still believe.

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Once a young man went out hiking in the mountain. While passing over a precipice, he slipped and rolled down. It meant sure death, but fortunately he was able to grab the branch of a tree. Hanging precariously and the branch giving way, he prayed aloud, “Lord, if you are up there, save me!”

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A booming voice answered, “Yes, this is God.” “Dear God, please help me,” said the man desperately.

“Yes, I’ll help you,” replied God. “But first, do you trust me?” “Of course, Lord!” the man pleaded.

* * *

“Then let go (of your hold)!” God said. “I’m begging the Lord to save me but he tells me to ‘let go.’ He looked up again and hollered, “If there is anybody else up there…help!”

Poor guy! He could not accept God’s will so he switched loyalty. (This shows that there are not only politicians who are turncoats or “balimbings” but also “balimbings” of faith).

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There are times when God tells us to “let go,” to trust him even when the situation looks hopeless. It can be the untimely death of a young son, a fourth stage cancer, an unjust treatment, a financial crisis.

What’s my attitude when such trying moments strike?

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Do I reflect that, perhaps, the fault lies in me as, for instance, I incurred lung cancer due to cigarette smoking? Or is our national economy slow in progress because of corrupt officials and leaders?

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“Letting go” means getting rid of our negative attitudes and practices that hamper personal and collective progress.

In the context of Easter, it means dying to our bad traits and vices and rising to new life.

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FAMILY TV MASS – is aired on 5PLUS Channel 59 at 6-7 a.m. every Sunday and at U-Tube on “The Filipino Catholic” at 8am; also on international GMA Pinoy TV. SPONSOR: HOLY FAMILY CHAPEL, Greenhills, Mandaluyong. Mass celebrant: FR. BEL SAN LUIS, SVD.

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The FAMILY that prays together stays together.

What do you think?

Written by Tempo Desk

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