TWENTY SEVENTH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME, YEAR C
2nd October 2022
Habakkuk 1:2-3,2:2-4; 2 Timothy 1:6-8,13-14; Luke 17:5-10.
The Church defined Christian faith as the supernatural gift of God that enables us to believe without doubting whatever God reveals. In today’s gospel, the apostles jointly requested Jesus to increase their faith. This request was for them to be strong at the face of hardship. But Jesus reminded them that faith as little as a mustard seed is enough. Jesus wants them to understand that faith is not an abstract, it is a practical reality.
The practicality of Christian faith is that truth must triumph over falsehood. Faith enables us to stand by the truth of God’s revelation against all odds. This explains why the first reading ended with the sentence; the upright man will live by his faithfulness. In moments of hardship, the natural tendency in us is to do away with morality. We are quick to resort to unethical alternative means when the hardship we face appears overwhelming. In my opinion, the current rise in energy bills and prices of food is a test of faith. The choice before us is either to face it as true Christians or non-Christians.
If our resolution is to face the current crisis as faithful Christian’s, the second reading is very reassuring. St Paul while advising Timothy reminds us of the nature of the gift we received from God. According to him, ‘God’s gift was not a spirit of timidity, but the Spirit of power, and love, and self-control. So you are never to be ashamed of witnessing to the Lord, or ashamed of me for being his prisoner; but with me, bear the hardships for the sake of the Good News, relying on the power of God’. Faith is enough for us to live through hardships. Faith keeps our minds focused on the truth of God’s revelation at face of any form of hardship. Christian fidelity is tested and proven in hardship.
Fr Anthony Ekpunobi, CM.