Saturday, April 02, 2011
Additional thoughts on the appointed Gospel reading for Lent IV
There is a lad here, which hath five barley loaves, and two small fishes: but what are they among so many?
The inevitable is not inevitable unless God says so. Every week some cable channel teaches our children that the universe will end; the sun will become a “red dwarf”; and before that the earth will have become incapable of sustaining life; and before that the human race will cease to exist. As far as science can tell, this is inevitable. And, many people in our churches have decided that our Anglican way of being Christians is doomed; that Continuing churches will stop growing; that our money will dry up; that we will attract no young people; and that the best we can do is hang on until we die. As far as their faith can stretch, this is inevitable.
But, like the businesses that have chosen not to participate in Recession, I have chosen, with my parish, not to participate in doom. If we are able only to weigh the number of our barley loaves and fishes against the size of the crowd, then failure is inevitable. The way of faith, however, is to place our little bit of next to nothing in the hands of Jesus Christ. In some places our people have maybe only a little money, a little time, a little physical strength. So, what do we do with the little we have?
We can be sure that the universe will not end; and that all of God’s faithful children will live forever; that as many as are in Christ will share His unending resurrected life; and that, therefore, life will not cease to be. That is because God has revealed what He plans to do with His universe, and with each one of us who is in Christ. We can be equally sure that Christ can take what little we have to place in His hands, and meet the need of the multitude. Only the will of God is truly inevitable. If we seek to do the little part of His will that we can, with what little we find in our hands, He will do the rest.