Grace to you!
Prudence is a tricky tool. Often considered an admirable quality, sustaining it is a challenge. Knowing what to say and how to say it isn't an easy skill. A time comes when one has to call a spade a spade. Then it will be a-matter-of-fact daring truth.
Consider in your workplace. You may have heard lies told over and over again. You've been prudent not to say a word, so you can keep your job or to be seen as a nice person. As the lies mount, they spread like oil, crisscrossing every boundary until they come right at you or the values you cherish so much. You must either take a stand or become part of the lie.
What would you do? Quit the job? Play to the gallery? Keep silent? Or take a stand? By and by, you must take a position that may have huge implications. Will you choose to remain silent and be a victim of deceitful cowardice? Or will you stand by the truth?
These are not hypothetical scenarios. They are real. I have heard of numerous dilemmas of this kind in families and the workplace. Little surprise, whistleblowers sometimes play an ethical role. They may think, "We have to take a stand."
In our spiritual journey, a time will come when we must dare to state who we are, what we believe, and where we are going. As Scripture would say, "At the appropriate time."
During the journey of Lent, we better take a cue from the Lord Jesus, who, in the Gospel of John 10:31-42, never backs down despite two back-to-back threats on his life. In matters of his identity as one with God, as God, and as Son of Man, no compromise was necessary. It's a-matter-of-fact reality about his identity as God. So also in matters of who you are as not just a person that is alive but a unique individual. You have values and beliefs you cherish that make up your identity—who you have become. It would be a terrible thing to deny who you are. Worse is to deny the faith you cherish.
Lent will lose its element if it does not lead us to this matter-of-fact reality. Lent is like a thread, connecting participants to the Christ. In Christ, the person becomes a new person, shaped in the ways of the Lord, cherishing the values consistent with the Lord’s. We have to ask, where am I in my belief in the divinity of Christ?
As we wrap up the fifth week of Lent, wouldn't it be wonderful to take a stand if we haven't? In short, affirm our faith in the unique, singularity of the divinity of Christ in the triune God. The affirmation is our testimony. It is part of our witness. Similarly, we open our hearts to abide by the ethical demands of this confession. We do so not sometimes but, by the grace of God, in season and out of season.
The decision is a source of controversy. To stand by it entails the cross. Not surprising since our Christian journey is shaped by way of the cross.
Let us pray: Lord, give me the grace to take a stand for you as our Lord and Savior. May I be ready to carry the cross associated with this faith declaration. Amen.
God love you. God bless you.
Fr. Maurice Emelu
[Friday, Lent, Week 5: Jer 20:10-13; Jn 10:31-42]
Author and Goal
Father Maurice Emelu PhD., provides a daily blog of reflections based on the Scriptural readings of the day from the Catholic liturgical calendar. The goal is to teach, inspire, encourage, and foster healing through the grace of God's word. They are written in a language that is appropriate for a general audience. You will find these reflections helpful for your spiritual growth, inspiration, and developing your thoughts. They may also be useful for ministers in preparing their sermons for liturgical celebrations.