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To Grow in Faith

by Francis Fernandez-Carvajal October 09, 2019 3 min read

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To Grow in Faith

In Conversation With God Weekly Reflection
27th Week of Ordinary Time: To Grow in Faith

By Francis Fernandez-Carvajal


5/30.1 Continually renewing one’s love for God.

The liturgy this Sunday focuses on the virtue of faith. In the First Reading the Prophet Habakkuk complains to the Lord about the apparent triumph of evil over good.[5683] He laments the mistreatment of the chosen people by invaders who flaunt their scandalous behaviour. How long, Lord, am I to cry for help while you will not listen.? ... Why do you set injustice before me, why do you look on where there is tyranny? Outrage and violence, this is all I see, all is contention, and discord flourishes. The Lord answers the Prophet with a call to patience and hope. The day will come when the evil ones will be punished: See how he flags, he whose soul is not at rights, but the upright man will live by his faithfulness. Even when it seems that evil has triumphed, as if God did not exist, we need to remember that God and his followers will triumph in the end. Living by faith means realizing that God calls us to live as his children in every moment of the day. We must be patient and place our hope in him.

In the Second Reading, St Paul exhorts Timothy to remain firm in his vocation, to preach the truth without being inhibited by human respect: I am reminding you to fan into a flame the gift that God gave you when I laid my hands on you. God’s gift was not a spirit of timidity, but the Spirit of power, and love, and self-control.[5684] St Thomas teaches that the grace of God is like a fire that loses its brilliance when the ashes are covered over.[5685] This is what happens when charity is almost smothered by lukewarmness or human respect. The fortitude needed to advance the Faith springs from the furnace of our interior life, which must never be allowed to go out. This is what we must ask from the Lord: who in the abundance of your kindness surpass the merits and the desires of those who entreat you, pour out your mercy upon us to pardon what conscience dreads.[5686] Give what prayer does not dare to ask.[5687] Give us a strong faith so that we may overcome our defects and give proper testimony to others. There are men who have no faith, who are sad and hesitant because of the emptiness of their existence, and exposed like weathercocks to ‘changeable’ circumstances. How different that is from our trusting life as Christians, which is cheerful, firm and solid, because we know and are absolutely convinced of our supernatural destiny![5688] What inspiration we can derive from faith! With this source of energy we can overcome the obstacles of difficult circumstances or personal weaknesses.

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[5683] Hab 1:2-3; 2:2-4

[5684] 2 Tim 1:6-8; 13-14

[5685] St Thomas, Commentary on the Second Letter to the Corinthians, 1:6

 

[5686] Roman Missal, Collect

[5687] ibid

[5688] St. J. Escrivá, Furrow, 73

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Francis Fernandez-Carvajal,

Rev. Francis Fernandez-Carvajal

Rev. Francis Fernández-Carvajal is a Priest of the Opus Dei Prelature and the author of many popular spiritual works. His seven-volume series In Conversation with God provides over 500 meditations to be used throughout the liturgical year. It has sold over 2 million copies and has been translated into many languages.

Francis Fernandez-Carvajal,

Rev. Francis Fernandez-Carvajal

Rev. Francis Fernández-Carvajal is a Priest of the Opus Dei Prelature and the author of many popular spiritual works. His seven-volume series In Conversation with God provides over 500 meditations to be used throughout the liturgical year. It has sold over 2 million copies and has been translated into many languages.



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