From the prophet Isaiah (Is 65:17-21) to the Gospel of John (Jn 4: 43-54) the Scripture readings for today are clear about what is happening here on this earth. Isaiah is simple and definitive in giving the message from God: Lo, I am about to create new heavens and a new earth…There shall always be rejoicing and happiness in what I create. It seems that things will not be proceeding as before. There is an element of faith necessary in the new order. (“Unless you people see signs and wonders, you will not believe…”) It seems to me that the key for today is the verse before the gospel which says simply: Seek good and not evil so that you may live, and the Lord will be with you. (Am 5:14)
Clearly, if we look back over the past year, we might see a pattern that fits what is being done here. Great things—good things for good people are happening—worldly things: like new vaccines and monetary relief for “the least among us.” It seems that all of our people are not ready to accept the good that is happening. Even governors of some states refuse to adhere to some of the simple things that will save us. (“Wear a mask,” for example.) Although that is true, we may be looking for solutions that are more arduous, more complicated—or simply more to our liking. What we are being called to might necessitate faith in ourselves and, in addition, trust in others, even those we have never listened to, liked or believed in before. We might have to give up our cherished ways of seeing things. Maybe it’s just that simple—although not easy.
Read the Scripture texts for today again (aloud, if possible). See if you can find anything that calls to you about our situation today. It may be as simple as letting go into a new way of being. (I said simple—not easy!) You might just be surprised at the result.