Frustration, fear, faithlessness. Sound familiar? These 3 “F” words are filling up our days. Social distancing, isolation, quarantining. The challenges we face today bring frustration, fear, and faithlessness. Our first reading today from Exodus, chapter 32, verses 7-14, displays each and every one of these three emotions. Moses went up the mountain to see God for what seemed an eternity. Once he came back with the 10 commandments the Jews had already melted down their gold jewelry and created a golden calf to worship. It did not matter that God, through Moses, had saved the Jews from slavery. It did not matter God had given them manna from heaven to eat or water at Meribah and Massah. It did not matter God had told them Moses was leading them to the promised land. Once the Jews felt frustration, fear, and faithlessness, they forgot all about God. And all they did was complain and replace the Lord with false gods.
The same three “F” words can be seen in our Gospel reading today from the book of John, chapter 5, verses 31-47. The Jews were once again showing frustration, fear, and faithlessness. This time it was Jesus Christ our Lord that was astounded at their unbelief after all He had done. Jesus himself becomes frustrated at their lack of faith in Him. The Jews did not accept Him and complained about all He tried to do. Our Lord refers back to Moses and tells the Jews if you did not believe Moses how could you believe me!
My brothers and sisters in Christ, we do not want to fall into the pattern of the 3 “F” words engulfing the Jews. Because Jesus brings us another 3 “F” words. Faith, Fearlessness, and Forgiveness! You see we have a major advantage over the Jews, we have met the Resurrected Christ! We know this journey of reflection and sacrifice during Lent ends in the most important weekend of mankind, Resurrection Sunday!
Our Lord does so much for us. He won for us salvation; he shows us the way to eternity. He brings us the Good News and shows us that even in difficult times we are to show Faith, Fearlessness, and Forgiveness!
My brothers and sisters in Christ, as we journey through this very unusual and difficult Lenten period, let us remember we know who wins at the end. Let us always remember to live with faith in Him, to not be fearful because we know in the end He wins and along the way, to forgive others as our Lord has forgiven us. Let us remember all the blessings He has given us.
As we become more and more isolated, let us not become more and more uncommunicative. Reach out to those that may be living in fear. Share with them the Good News. Let us be worthy through our actions of the promises of Christ! Amen.