Friday of the Second Week in Ordinary Time

Second chances are usually a sign of mercy, while third chances are a sign of weakness. As the old saying goes, “fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me.” We are willing to forgive and stick with someone, but only so much. God has made a covenant with Israel, which Israel has broken every which way possible. Conventional wisdom would deem God foolish for remaining by the Israelites. Yet in Hebrews, we see the fidelity of God. God knows our weaknesses, and will not abandon us to them. Instead, He will establish a new covenant and write it upon our hearts.

We see this play out today, with the selection of the Apostles. Jesus calls the Twelve to follow Him, “that he might send them out to preach and to have authority to drive out demons.” Even if Jesus did not know their hearts, it would not take Sherlock Holmes to see how unsuitable they are. At various points, they will argue, try and get Jesus to use His authority to settle vendettas, completely misunderstand Jesus’ message, and jockey for positions over one another–and all of this is before the more serious betrayals at the Crucifixion. But Jesus has called them, and will form them. In spite of their inadequacy, all but one will be numbered among the great saints of the Church. Thankfully, God’s wisdom can outwit even our foolishness.

January 23rd, 2015