The most difficult times can produce the greatest spiritual blessings. God truly knows just what we need at every moment!

Thursday, December 26, 2013

26. XII. - St. Stephen - Deacon and Martyr

You will be hated by all

Perhaps you do not experience such a situation as Christians in Arab countries, in India, in Indonesia or on Moluccas. Perhaps we are not persecuted and exterminated openly as the Christians in those countries. Perhaps nobody demands from us a witnessing of blood, like in the case of Patron Saint of today. However, if someone wants to be a Christian today, he/she has to be a Christian not just on Sunday, and must be prepared to be misunderstood, to be ridiculed, to be mocked, even from other Christians, and those who are the righteous servants of God and believe have to admit the persecutions. To be a disciple of Christ has never been easy and never will be easy. He -Jesus Christ-was a "sign of contradiction", "stumbling block" and "rock of offense". He has always been and will be. "Whoever wishes to come after me, let him take up his cross and follow me" - these are the words of Him who first took on the cross and hung him in contempt and neglect. And he also said: "The servant is not greater than his master. If they persecuted me, they will persecute you. "(Jn 15:20)

Searching of applause and popularity, compromises and agreements, it is not the style of Christ or His disciples. And you have to be prepared. Bright, clear witness of life and, if necessary, also the death witnessing (it is an unusual grace and not everyone can attain it) is the only way of a true disciple of Christ. Compromises, systems, and diplomacy, is something that is absolutely strange to Christianity. They will ridicule and challenge you, mock and call you: fundamentalist and fanatic, will speak about the need of tolerance and the need for prudence ... but in this case, Christ was most imprudent, backward and nonconformist, fundamentalist and stubborn, the most smug and immune to diplomacy. In this case, all his disciples with St. Stephen were fundamentalists, fanatics and fanatics!

"You will be hated and despised by all. Brother will raise against his brother and father will rise against his own child ... "And maybe that's what you need? Of course, that does not always and not mindlessly, but sometimes you have to be able to go against the current, even if the current of conformism is very trendy and very strong. We are afraid of being ridicule, we fear the unpopularity, but ... holy peace and Peacefulness at any price is not the true PEACE OF GOD. It is only a delusion and lying to oneself and others.

Holy Stephen - the first martyr, help us to be faithful to Christ, despite the temptations of conformity, despite the unpopularity and fear of losing ...

Holy Stephen - pray for us ... conformists ...

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