Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Christ Above All

It's always a strange juxtaposition for me...being at the beginning of the Christmas season...and yet reading about the end times...and the persecution that will come because of Christ. Maybe it's fitting...a way of keeping everything in perspective. Of course Christmas is a joyful time...a time of thanksgiving...a time of celebration. But always at the edge of the Christmas season...there is a hint of a shadow cast from the Cross. This Baby who was born to save us all...will save us by crucifixion. He must that we can live. And the same is true for us...we must die...die to our selves...die to our that we may live.

But the thing that really struck me in today's readings was the Gospel. It seems like Jesus is warning us...that when it all comes down to it...all that we'll have is Him. Ultimately, our loyalty must be to Him above all. Not to family, not to friends. Our love for Him must surpass that of even our parents, our siblings, and even our spouses and children. Of course many people are blessed with spouses who are truly yoked together with them...sharing this gift of Faith in Christ. And thank God for all those whose children have grown up and not departed from the way of Faith taught to them. But the truth is...when push comes to shove...when the world hates you...when death is the cost of belief...we can never be sure how anyone will hold up. I can't imagine the feeling of betrayal that would come with being "handed over" by those you love most in this world. But of course, this is nothing that Jesus Himself did not experience.

And so again we find the theme...of holding everything with our hands open. Everything we have here on Earth can be taken away in a flash. All that lasts...all that is Eternal...we find in and through Christ. He will protect what matters. He will restore all that is lost ten times over. I guess it all comes down to Trust. Do I trust Jesus with everything? I mean really...everything? Am I willing to let go of everything...all that I love and hold dear...all that I value? That's what it comes down to it seems. Do I love Christ...really love Him? Do I trust Him....really trust Him? And do I love and trust Him...above all?

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