Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Discernment: Faith, Trust, Humility

In today’s first reading, Daniel 3: 14-20, 91-92, 95, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego stand firm in their faith. They do not succumb to King Nebuchadnezzar, who has threatened them with death if they did not bow down and worship his god.  “There is no need for us to defend ourselves before you in this matter.  If our God, whom we serve, can save us from the white-hot furnace and from your hands, O king, may he save us! But even if he will not, know, O king, that we will not serve your god or worship the golden statue that you set up.”

As we are faced with discerning the will of God, we may want God to act in a miraculous way: just show me God; make your way crystal clear to me so that others and I can be ecstatic about what you are asking of me!  But what if God leaves us in the dark and we have no way to answer those who say to us: That is not a right choice for you? Would we, similar to the humility of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, say to those who taunt us about our vocation or the choice we are about to make:  “If my God, whom I serve, can make it crystal clear to me what His will is and also turn your opposition to acceptance of the choice I am about to make,  may God do so.  But even if he will not, know that I will follow what I believe is God’s will for me and not give in to your doubts and outright statement that what I am choosing is not for me.”  God will give me the strength to remain firm without miracles.

 As we discern God’s will, there will be times when we are not able to defend our position but need to remain silent and wait upon God. God will defend us in God’s time.  We may look stupid or feel humiliated by not getting others to understand our position. However, we are not alone! Jesus did not defend Himself in face of Pilate’s questioning. Nor did He defend Himself upon the cross. It was God’s will that He was carrying out even to His death on the cross. And His Father’s will did not need His defense. Neither does it in your life. 

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