Sunday, May 15, 2016

Oh no! Not another comforter!

Sermon preached at Our Lady of Walsingham and St Francis on the Feast of Whitsunday

Are you out of your comfort zone? These days we are told that it is good to come out from our comfort zone occasionally in order to experience new things in life. By this we usually mean the way we usually live our lives without too much worry or stress.

Our Lord promises to each of His disciples a cross. That's about as far from comfortable as we can get. Has God got a vendetta against comfy sofas?

The word "comfort" literally means to come with strength. An army captain was once said to "comfort his men" by running after them with a large spear! That doesn't sound much of we understand by comfort. What possible connection can there be between the comfy sofa and the maniac captain?


In order to feel comfortable, we need to be secure, confident that we can handle the situation. We are prepared, and can foresee no surprises. With an army captain bringing up the rear, he is expressing confidence in his men. His actions are a shout of "we can win this battle!" He's not attacking his men; he is reminding them that they can fight, that they can be strong, that they can win!

Our Lord has acted as comforter to His disciples. He has taught them that their sins can be forgiven, that they can be with God, that they can be saved. Then, like the captain, He shows them by completing the covenant between God and Man.

Now He ascends so that He can draw men to heaven. The trouble is that we lose heart. We get distracted. We forget what Jesus looks like.

We forget our own salvation!

What do we do?


We come out of our comfort zone.

Our Lord says that He sends  the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.

Many people are too comfortable in the world that they forget God. They settle for what they see and then wonder why they can find no peace. The Christian cannot find peace in this world and needs another comforter in order to find the true peace of mind. This is the Holy Spirit Who proceeds from the Father through the Son.

If we forget God, if we forget His Commandments, if we prefer the World to Him, then we cannot love Him, and we cannot receive the Holy Ghost. It is the Holy Ghost who brings true strength, confidence, and comfort.

Our Lord says:
The Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

The Holy Ghost will remind us of God, will teach us of God, will tell us again of God's live for us.

In order for Him to do that, we must love God first and foremost. We must not make the world our comfort zone, but take heart that our Comforter is always with us. We must look through this world to God beyond, and see Him in others.

Let us pray anew for the Holy Ghost to transform our lives and our vision so that we may work the will of God in this world so that we may indeed see the joy to come and find our peace in that.

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