9 July 2010 Friday of the 14th Week in Ordinary Time
Hosea 14, 2-10; Psalm 51; Matthew 10, 16-23
It is not easy to be a staunch Christian these days. Much more being Catholic. We are sometimes regarded by many as unreasonable and archaic. Some of our doctrines may seem so alien to the modern mind. Our stand on certain issues may be construed to be disconnected to present realities. With the advent of the internet where information and disinformation abounds, we will be like “sheep” in the midst of wolves. And we all know how fascinated our enemies are of us that they prefer to pick on us like bullies, than pick on other religions. If they were vampires, we are like fresh human blood.
We are not entirely faultless. The Church has lost much of its credibility with sins and scandals in history entirely exposed to the world via the internet. But they forget that it is not all of us. Enough said.
But though we are to be sent like sheep; Jesus said that we too have to be shrewd like serpents and simple as doves. That means we should not be unprepared. Cunning is borne out of knowledge and experience. Knowing the style or the ‘way of thinking’ of our detractors will be useful. It is also about knowing the best strategy, like a soldier in battle.
Those who walk into a storm unprepared and claim that “God will protect me” is stupidity. Sometimes these piousness borders on cluelessness. Yes, he said we are like sheep to the slaughter, and He also said that we are to be as shrewd as serpents. Put that together it means that we may not have the strength of a superhero like Superman, but at least we can put up a good fight. Having God as our protector means we cooperate with God who can use much of our brains.