5 Jun 2015
We know that God is present and at work in the here-and-now. And yet, our hope and our joy as Christians also lie in the future.
We hear today of Anna, the mother of Tobiah, who looks off into the distance for her son. She looks to the future with anticipation because she knows he’s coming. And when he comes, she is overjoyed—as we expect.
The same can be said of the Jews. In the 1st Century, they were expecting the messiah to come. It was a reason for them to celebrate when they heard Jesus talking about the messiah in such a fantastic way. They couldn’t, of course, foresee that the messiah would have to suffer and die. But when that did happen, Jesus himself held an inner “joy,” an inner peace because he knew where he was going—back to his beloved Father. On the Cross, he was looking ahead.
And that’s a common thread, it seems, with so many of the saints. Even though they face difficulties, they have a vision of where they’re going and what they’re about. We remember today St. Boniface, the patron saint of the Germanic lands, who went from one difficult situation to the next around Europe, only to be martyred one night while reading a book. His life revolved around the Kingdom of God—both in the present and in the future to come.
God was his hope and his joy. And the same goes for us. Our hope is in God alone. And as much as God is present here and today, he also stands further down the road in a place we hope to be.
Beyond the Cross is the Resurrection. Beyond the difficulties of life are the blessings of life. Beyond the darkness of doubt is the light of hope. May we look ahead and be upheld by that light.