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Let Us Sow the Field of Faith

 
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Prayer-Soldier
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 02, 2016 7:55 pm    Post subject: Let Us Sow the Field of Faith Reply with quote

Let Us Sow the Field of Faith

Scripture:


How long, O Lord, shall I cry, and you will not hear? Shall I cry out to you suffering violence, and you will not save? Why have you shown me iniquity and grievance, to see plundering and injustice before me? And there is a judgment, but opposition is more powerful.

And the Lord answered me, and said: Write the vision, and make it plain upon tablets: that he that reads it may run over it. For as yet the vision is far off, and it shall appear at the end, and shall not lie: if it make any delay, wait for it: for it shall surely come, and it shall not be slack. Behold, he that is unbelieving, his soul shall not be right in himself: but the just shall live in his faith.
(Habakkuk 1:2-3, 2:2-4)

For which cause I admonish you that you stir up the grace of God which is in you by the imposition of my hands. For God has not given us the spirit of fear: but of power and of love and of sobriety. Be not, therefore, ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but labor with the gospel, according to the power of God.

Hold the form of sound words which you have heard of me: in faith and in the love which is in Christ Jesus. Keep the good thing committed to your trust by the Holy Spirit who dwells in us.
(2 Timothy 1:6-8, 13-14)

And the apostles said to the Lord: Increase our faith. And the Lord said: If you had faith like to a grain of mustard seed, you might say to this mulberry tree: Be rooted up and be transplanted into the sea. And it would obey you. But which of you, having a servant plowing or feeding cattle, will say to him, when he is come from the field: Immediately go. Sit down to eat. And will not rather say to him: Make ready my supper and gird yourself and serve me, while I eat and drink; and afterwards you shall eat and drink? Does he thank that servant for doing the things which he commanded him? I think not. So you also, when you shall have done all these things that are commanded you, say: We are unprofitable servants; we have done that which we ought to do. (Luke 17:5-10)

Reflection:

We do not see as God sees or experience time as the One who is, was and ever shall be. The picture we can see is only that which we can observe through our own eyes, but not the eyes which have seen the expanse of all the generations. Just as a child believes 15 minutes is almost an eternity and an elderly person views 15 minutes as merely a blink, we should not be surprised that the plan of God, which flows across the span of generations, is but a brief moment within eternity.

We are often confused as to how such a merciful and loving God allows so many tribulations, but what we fail to observe is the role of the choices which come from us. God sees us both as individuals and as a people. In each case, He has given us the freewill to choose our path as individuals, communities and nations. During the time of the prophet Habakkuk, the chosen children decided to lead lives which strayed from the ways of God. Many were the pursuits and false gods they preferred over the ways of their Creator. As individuals and as a people, they began to adopt ways of evil in the eyes of the Lord. While His patience is considerable for the benefit of the faithful (Genesis 18:16-32), when evil becomes the norm of the people, His hand of discipline comes forth.

Habakkuk speaks of a time of perverted justice and laments that God does not intervene as the wicked seem to have their way and the just are persecuted. The prophet struggles to understand the apparent silence of the Lord. The times of injustice which God allows is also a time for the people to learn from their choices; to learn the wages of wickedness and the blessings of righteousness; to see the consequences of the former because they have left behind the latter. His desire is that the people will learn and turn from whence they have strayed.

God responds to the expectations of Habakkuk that His action will come within an appropriate time. The wicked shall be punished and the just will receive blessings because of their faith.

As we observe our own time, the questions of Habakkuk may come to our own mind. We must trust that God will respond. The reward for the faithful may not always be within this world, but God will not forget how they turn to Him and follow His commandments. The punishment for the wicked will come in its time. In the time of His justice, the wicked shall lament, if not in this world, surly they will cry out from the abyss they have chosen and to which they shall be forever banished. He will rebuild the righteous nation from the remnant few and bring forth to them peace and prosperity as long as they endeavor to live by His ways.

In times of trouble, we must have courage in faith. In times where we struggle to comprehend all the evil which swirls and abounds, we must lift up our sorrows in prayer, but also our thanks and praise for the blessings He promises. As we face the struggles of persecution at the hands of the wicked, we must remember that as we turn to Him, He will give us strength to survive the test. If we are afflicted, we must trust that what He allows is for a greater good to come.

Should we decide to trust in the ways of the world, He shall leave us to the consequences of the world, but as we hold on to the Holy Spirit, He will hold on to us. And so it was, Paul, from his imprisonment and persecution, encouraged Timothy to not be timid in faith, for if the people see only wickedness and they do not see an example of those who walk in faith and love, they shall succumb to the belief that the ways of evil are the only norm and the only path.

Let us then, put our hands to the plow within the field of faith with the same fervor as the devoted servant who tills the ground and sows the field so that a bountiful harvest may come. Though great work may be before us, so shall come the blessings of the meal at the table of the Master. Let us remember the words of the Lord given to Saint Theresa of Avila, who was told, ?Occupy yourself with My interests and I'll occupy Myself with yours.? The more we bless Him, the more He will bless us. (The Pieta Prayer Booklet)

During our daily journey, we must ask ourselves, what does faith mean to us? We must reflect upon what we seek from God and what He seeks from us, especially as we face the choices of the day. He has given us His commandments as our obligation, but if we observe their purpose, that they are there such that we may share in love and should do no harm, we shall also receive the blessing of what comes by following His ways.

As we discover the spark of faith within us, we must carefully examine it. As we turn to Him in prayer, as we gather within His community, as we study His Word, as we prepare our hands for the works of compassion and charity, we shall fan the ember into flames. As we seek to bring the Holy Spirit within our hearts, His ways will become clearer, nearer and dearer to us. We shall see His blessings and the ways in which He seeks to work within our lives.

The evil one will provide to us all number of distractions by which he seeks to blind our heart and by which we might allow the ember of faith to fade, so that whatever warmth within us shall turn cold. The evil one cares not how the flame of faith dies within us, only that it does.

If we are to increase in faith, we must first seek to protect that which we have. As we come together within His community, as we invite others within, as we turn to Him in prayer and offer to Him our thanks and praise, He will not deny us. He will seek to open our eyes to understand the blessings of His ways. Let us, then, open our hearts to Him. Let us ask Him to what purpose He desires that we should put the talents He has created within us and the gifts He has allowed us. Let us ask Him for the strength and courage to stand in the face of evil such that by what we do, we shall help to bring forth the blessings of His love, not only for the benefit of the life we lead, but for all who cross our path.

May the peace and blessings of the Lord be with you always,
Prayer Soldier

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