Most people have experienced occasions in life when they have felt powerless and unable to change difficult circumstances. The feeling of helplessness is a common human experience. It can paralyze and make us believe that God does not care about us. We pray for the situation to change, and nothing seems to happen. When we feel vulnerable, weak and ineffective, the situation often is made worse because we also feel completely alone, abandoned by God.
But the Easter season is a time when we remember that we will rise again. The core principle of our faith is that Jesus Christ died for our sins but was raised from the dead by his heavenly Father and that we, too, one day will rise again from despair, frustration, and loss. We will rise again both to eternal life and to more abundant life now because of our faith. The fundamental belief Christians cherish is that our Father loves us unconditionally and is our most ardent and consistent supporter. That reality can sustain us through the often distressing feelings of helplessness.
To the extent we choose to accept that love and refuse to be mastered by despair and the negative thoughts that can envelop us in a cloud of darkness, we will be vested with a new sense of power and control in our lives. This is what it means to be empowered by our faith. This is what it means to be freed by our faith. The power and freedom comes from the deepest recognition and courageous choice to hold on to the undeniable truth that no circumstance or situation—no matter how bleak—is impossible for God. As Saint Paul wrote, God is able to accomplish infinitely more than we could ever have hoped for or imagined (Ephesians 3:20). His power fills our weakness. His glory heals our hopelessness.
In our current message series for the season of Easter called, To Be Continued: Fearless Evangelization, we want to equip and prepare you to bring this healing message of Christ to the world through the ordinary means of your life, including your own particular gifts and strengths. One of those means that often is overlooked is the effect we have on other people when we connect with them in some meaningful way.
Maybe you’ve never thought of yourself as a person of influence, but your behavior can have a significant ripple effect in the sea of humanity when you invest in the people around you. It’s a simple matter of connection. When you reach out to others and gather them into your orbit through encouragement, recognition, service, spiritual friendship, or a simple invitation to share your life with them in some way, you are demonstrating the power and freedom of life in Jesus Christ.
Listen to our message this Sunday live or online at www.stbrendanparish.org to learn how you can be the access point for others to live more fully, freely, and powerfully in Christ.
--Father Roger Gustafson, Pastor
Father Roger Gustafson