A phrase which has given me great strength over the years is that “God does not call the equipped, He equips the called.” Time after time God has proven this and yet we as humans still have doubts. Amos was a shepherd, who also looked after trees, called to be a prophet, Amaziah, a priest questioned his calling. Andrew, Simon, James and John were fishermen, Matthew a tax-collector; despised by the people; and yet Jesus called them and sent these men out with others to preach repentance, cast out devils and anoint the sick.
In the part of his letter to the Ephesians, which we hear today; St Paul reminds us that we did not chose to follow Jesus, we are chosen to follow Jesus, from the beginning of time we are chosen, for the glory of God. All of us have been chosen, living as a Christian means that we have responded to the call. God does not care whether we feel worthy of the call, God does not care if we feel able to do what He is calling us to. This is not about how we feel in this matter. God will provide. God equips the called.
The apostles sent out in twos were told to take nothing of surplus with them, they were to rely on God’s providence. God sees the whole picture, as people, our view is restricted, bound by where we live and what we know. God knows everything, past, present and future. God sees the whole potential in every single one of us and He calls us to fulfil that potential. God is calling us to live pure and spotless lives in His presence; the potential of which we can scarcely imagine.
There is great excitement in our country at the moment because of sport; sport can provide people with tremendous highs and often horrendous lows. The exhilaration of winning a large sporting event is miniscule compared to the exhilaration of reaching heaven. Our sporting heroes have achieved nothing compared with those who have answered the call to serve God and now “live through love in his presence”.
This is something I need to remind myself of as I get caught up in the sports which I follow. As it says elsewhere in scripture, the athletes train for a prize which withers, we are training for a prize which never fades (1 Cor 9:25). So, while we admire the dedication put in by the tennis players at Wimbledon, the cyclists in Paris and the footballers in Wembley this weekend and perhaps hear comments about legends, immortals and unforgettable; the true immortals are the shepherds, fishermen and tax collectors; people like you and me, who heard a call and responded to that call. They completed their mission from God and are now living with God being warmed by the reflection of God’s love and Glory.
Please keep in your prayers
- Those who are sick, those who are dying, the recently deceased and those who mourn.
- Those preparing to return to Mass.
- Margaux, Niamh and Mila who are being baptised this weekend and their parents and Godparents.
- Those preparing for ordination to the Priesthood, Diaconate and Permanent Diaconate.
- The Year of the Eucharist, which has now started, that this will lead to a fresh outpouring of love by the people of God for the Body and Blood of Christ.
- Those who have been unable to receive the Eucharist during the pandemic.