I think that many of us have either a poor understanding of the meaning of “Salvation” or no understanding. Yet, it is so crucial to our very lives.
Many homilies I have spent defining “Salvation” and hopefully getting across the relevance of this term; and that was for my sake.
Salvation is freedom! It is the freedom to do what is good and just in this world. It is the freedom to be our natural selves, as God intended.
We are already SAVED in Jesus Christ. It is not anything we can merit, earn, buy or obtain. It is already freely given to every man, woman and child. Christ has opened the way for us to be good and loving people, and not slaves to any other condition.
Life is about participating in that salvation and making it real in our lives.—That is the tricky part.
LIFE IS HARD
It is soooo easy to get caught up in the negativity of life, and to let that negativity define us. It is too easy for so many of us to get enmeshed in our financial struggles, our relationship problems, our illnesses, our loneliness, sicknesses, etc…..
NOT that these are not real concerns, they ARE. They are very real and they really can hurt us. They can hurt us by causing to withdraw from others; from love of others; from doing what is good.
Salvation is to not be defined by these bad moments or events. The Salvation of the Christ is to go through these struggles but not to let them sap away our energy; take give away our capacity to love.
Jesus reveals that we find our identity in God and in God alone.
In that identity we find our true selves, we find our place in the universe, we find our harmony.
In that identity we understand that no other event, no other person, no cancer, disease, addiction truly can control us.
A WIDOW’S STORY
Recall the story of the Widow’s mite in Luke (21:1-4). This widow, who lived in poverty, still gave of her sustenance, to aid those even less fortunate that herself.
SHE was NOT defined or controlled by her poverty.
This is what Jesus saw and this is what he commended. She saw beyond herself, to do what was good.
Whereas the rich in the story, who only gave of their excess, were defined by their money, their things. They did not do true good.
Think about the dark times your life. I bet they were so hard to see through. Those times dominated our lives, in every aspect and inhibited us from being fully alive.
So easy to be perpetually angry, grumpy, cross with others. So easy to be “poor me” and stay that way.
Salvation is given by Christ. It is a path of letting ourselves be defined by the Love of God, and the love of God, first and foremost.
It is about rising above, being resurrected in the here and now into a new life.
What is your story? What do you give control over your own life? Do you want to live?