Natus in Via

Born on the Way 

Aug 30, 2020

22nd Sunday Ordinary Time, Year A

Worthy Unexpectedness

You duped me, O LORD, 

and I let myself be duped.

Jeremiah 20:7


It would seem, right, that the Way of the Lord would be an easy way. With the certainty of Faith, for Truth Himself, the most meek and gentle of Heart, has said, “I will give you rest… My yoke is easy, my burden light” (cf. Mt 11:28-20). Many psalmists, saints and sinners – you and me – would agree with Jeremiah at times. Some are images of Simon the Cyrenean, the Mothers of the Martyred Innocents of Bethlehem, or the Weeping Women on the Way of the Cross.

Something about this closeness, nearness, proximity to Jesus, God-with-us, will always be unsettling, at least in this life. Building life upon rock seems like climbing a loose rock mountain. It only took walking into the city from the field at the “wrong” time for Simon to take the place of the Lord under the Cross. Our footsteps are ever sandy.

In time, with Mercy, we find that it is the unexpected, the unhoped for, the little things/ones, to be what we call, in shorthand, Providence. Think of the woman at the well of John 4. Think especially of the transformation of Love that is our coming to a living Faith in the Real Presence of Jesus in the Most Holy Eucharist, what Hope that brings. Slowly, almost unnoticed, our definition of easy and light changes, or better, as we change, with grace, we find the rest which our Jesus has, which only intimacy with Him can give. 

Just before those sweet and beloved verses (cf. Mt 11:25-27), He reveals the Source:

I thank thee, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou hast hidden these things from the wise and understanding and revealed them to babes; yea, Father, for such was thy gracious will. All things have been delivered to me by my Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and any one to whom the Son chooses to reveal him. 

The Father, Lord of heaven and earth, is also the Great Hider and Lover of Hiddenness. This is the path of the Incarnation – of Salvation – which the wisdom and understanding of this world cannot fathom. We think not as God does, but as man (cf. Mt 16:21-27).  Somehow, it is the Cross, planted firmly on the rock of Golgotha, outside the city, where all becomes sure, anchored, transformed, grace-filled. “Wrong” – for to die on a tree was thought accursed (cf. Deut 21:22-23) – becomes in the meek and humble Heart of the Innocent One “Setting Right” (cf. Gal 3:13); Death:Life::Lose:Save::Humbled::Glorified. Within the Cross, each splinter, is a revelation of Grace-full-ness, of Chosen-ness, of Beloved-Child-ness and Peace-beyond-Understanding.

Sometimes, we just have to be duped. 🙂 Well, we will talk about this more, surely, one step is enough for today. 

… by the Cross,

the blood and the death of Him,

You have chosen to free and to redeem. 

St. Francis


Fr. Paschal Mary, MFVA


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