What do we place our confidence in today? I know that Fr. Mark places his confidence in GPS, because without it he would be lost! Just kidding Father.
Our readings today challenge us to place our confidence in Christ. We heard in Saint Paul’s letter to the Corinthians: “Such confidence we have through Christ to God.” The reason for this confidence is that Jesus is the New Covenant, because He is the one who teaches us of God’s profound love for us, he also shows us how to love God, and finally, Jesus is the New Covenant because he sends us out into the world to be bearers of God’s love. This is also what we hear in the Gospel today. Jesus didn’t come to abolish the law but to fulfill it. In other words, Jesus came to show us that the law is grounded in love. The fulfillment of the law is to love God with our whole hearts and to love our neighbor as ourselves (Mt 22:37-40). Thus, Jesus is calling us to be confident disciples!
There are three marks of a confident disciple. The first mark is for us to be confident in God’s love for us. Remember the movie Finding Nemo? Marlin, Nemo’s Father, loses his son. The whole movie is Marlin’s search for his son. Obviously Marlin loved his son Nemo very much. This is what God does for us. Jesus is sent by our Father in heaven to search out sinners, so that we can come back to him. The fact that God would become man to bring us back into relationship with him should give us great confidence in God’s love!
The second mark of a confident disciple is that during sufferings and trials he remains confident in God’s love. Whenever we experience suffering, we must remember that so did Jesus. He suffered too on the cross. God has not stopped loving you when suffering comes!
Finally, the third mark of a confident disciple is one who trusts that the Holy Spirit will strengthen him to participate in Jesus’ Mission. Confident disciples remember that they are called to bring Christ to the world and that Holy Spirit will give them the strength to do so.
So, as we gather around this holy altar today, let us be confident disciples today. Let us remember that the Eucharist is both an encounter with God’s love for me and also the spiritual nourishment needed to be a confident “minister of the new covenant.” Let us respond to that love by confidently bringing Christ to the world.