Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. Indeed, by faith our ancestors received approval. By faith we understand that the worlds were prepared by the word of God, so that what is seen was made from things that are not visible.
By faith Abel offered to God a more acceptable sacrifice than Cain’s. Through this he received approval as righteous, God himself giving approval to his gifts; he died, but through his faith he still speaks. By faith Enoch was taken so that he did not experience death; and “he was not found, because God had taken him.” For it was attested before he was taken away that “he had pleased God.” And without faith it is impossible to please God, for whoever would approach him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.
By faith Noah, warned by God about events as yet unseen, respected the warning and built an ark to save his household; by this he condemned the world and became an heir to the righteousness that is in accordance with faith.
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
These wintry February days we inch our way towards our annual journey through Lent towards Easter. In this “in-between time” today’s gospel reading brings us to the mount of the Transfiguration. With Peter, James, and John we are strengthened and encouraged for the journey towards the cross which begins on March 1.
Today’s reading from Hebrews reminds us to be confident in faith as we approach these days of grace. How has my faith grown since the dawn of 2017? What gifts and graces have strengthened my heart as I go about my daily routine? What individuals at work, in school, at home have surprised me with their kindness, with their sense of hope amidst the daily grind? And can I find some time this weekend to speak words of gratitude to God as I prepare for the adventures of another week of grace and service?
—the Jesuit Prayer Team
Glory be to the Father, the Son, and Holy Spirit.
As it was in the beginning, is now, and will be always
until the end of time. Amen.