My dearly beloved, the call to Christianity is a call to follow Christ in good times and in bad. Trials and temptations are what will determine whether we are real Christians or just paying lip-service to God. We are in a moment of trial or test and at the end of this challenging moment, we will know ‘Christians’ (mere church goers or those who only know about God), and Christians (those who trust and believe in God). Will we pass the ‘litmus test’?
In our first reading, the ungodly men said “let us test what will happen at the end of his life…let us test him with insult and torture, that we may find out how gentle he is, and make trial of his forbearance.” We are also being tested in this challenging moment of the pandemic to see if the things we know and profess about God, we really believe and trust them. We often say with God all things are possible, in His own time, he makes all things beautiful; I trust in the Lord, and others. Will we stand by these in these trying times or we’ll quickly change our song.
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were also tested. What was interesting about their test was they didn’t know whether God will save them or not, but they remained resolute and they triumphed. Many others, like Job, were also tested.
This time is also our litmus test. In chemistry, a litmus test is used to find out if a solution is an acid or a base. A special kind of paper is dipped in the liquid being tested during a litmus test. A scientific litmus test can tell you the pH of a gas or liquid — in other words, it shows exactly how acidic the substance is; it turns red if it’s acidic and blue if it’s alkaline, or base. The term litmus test is also used to talk about a simple, decisive test of something.
Our gospel reading draws our mind to the fact that our master, Jesus, was also put to the test. People provoked Him, doubted Him, they sought to kill Him. But in all these, He knew why He had come to this earth, so He did not waver in His mission.
At the end of this pandemic we will know whether we are “red” (real) or “blue” (fake) Christians. This is a real moment of test. Pray for strength and grace that you don’t fail the test. It’s my prayer that we all come out victorious.
KEEPING YOU ALL IN PRAYERS. GOD BLESS YOU AND PLEASE BE SAFE.
By Rev. Fr. Patrick Quarcoopome
Sacred Heart Parish, Derby Avenue Accra