The Responsorial Psalm affirms God’s unfailing mercy and love: “Save me, O Lord, in your mercy” (Psalm109).In Romans 5: 31-39 Paul puts all our security in the reliability and power of God’s love. Nothing, he says, “will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”It makes no difference what others think or say about us, or even what they do to us: “If God is for us, who can be against?… It is God who acquits us; who will condemn?” What can anyone do that will separate us from the love of Christ? That is all that matters.All we need to concern ourselves with is persevering in faith, hope and love, serving God as faithful stewards of all that has been entrusted to us. If we do this we can live in perfect confidence, because God’s love will never fail us. He is the God of “steadfast love and faithfulness” (Exodus 34:6). He proved it by giving up his own Son for us on the cross. We pray with assurance, “Save me, O Lord, in your mercy.”Luke 13: 31-35 shows us Jesus practicing what Paul preached. The sustaining force in Jesus’ life was the Father’s love for him and his love for the Father. Even when his people refused to listen to him and Herod sought to kill him, he continued on his course: “I cast out demons and perform healings today and tomorrow, and on the third day I accomplish my purpose” — by dying and rising from the dead. He was saddened by Jerusalem’s refusal to accept the Good News. Later he would weep over the city, foreseeing her fate (Luke 19:41). But he kept going until on the cross he could finally say, “It is finished!” (John 19:30; see 16:4).The greatest test of stewardship is perseverance — especially when it seems that Jesus has left us alone and is never coming back! That is when it is hard to persevere in prayer, to keep affirming our faith and hope, and to continue working against all visible odds for the transformation of society and the establishment of God’s reign in the world.That is when we have to remember that God’s love never fails and will not fail us. We have to insist with ourselves that nothing, absolutely nothing, “will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” And we have to keep looking forward to the day Jesus promised, when we and all who have persevered in faith and hope will cry out at his coming, “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.”Initiative: Be Christ’s steward. Remember his faithfulness and persevere.
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