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Two years ago I had the façade of the church repaired. We replaced over 150 concrete blocks. The casts had to match by texture, shape, and color. The project cost over four hundred thousand dollars. Think about that. You could buy a condo with a view for four hundred thousand dollars. You can take a $1000-a-day vacation for 400 days. You could pay cash for your college education. You could give 400 people a really nice Christmas present. It is a lot of money, but it was worth it? It is because I will not have to worry about a piece of concrete landing on someone’s head when they go into the church.
Jesus says whoever eats my body and drinks my blood will have eternal life. That is the price for eternal life and the question we need to ask is this: it is worth it? Is it worth the faith and life commitment?
A group of friends carried a paralyzed man to Jesus. When they arrived, the house was full, and they were unable to get the man inside. Assessing the situation, they had every reason to call off the mission. They could come back another time to meet the Lord. They had plenty of reasons to call off their plans, but they didn’t. They went on top of the roof and pulled up the man on the mat with them. They remove some tiles and lower the man down. Think about that. We have churches closing, at this very hour, all over the country, because they are practically empty, and these folks are ripping apart someone’s roof so they can get close to Christ. I can picture the friends looking down the hole and see Jesus looking back at them saying, “Your faith made a difference today. It was worth the trouble.”
There was the woman who was hemorrhaging for twelve years. She spent all her money on doctors. She had one last hope. But when she saw Jesus walk by, she had many reasons not to approach Jesus and ask for a cure. Jesus was in a hurry to get to a twelve-year-old girl who was about to die. Every tick of the clock was precious. There was a large crowd pushing in on him. In addition to these problems, she was weak and low on energy to battle the traffic and the pressure of time. Better come at another time. There were many reasons for her to wait another day, but she didn’t. She charged into the crowd and touched his cloak and got well. Jesus told her that it was by her faith that she was saved. It was worth it.
The Roman centurion had many reasons not to ask Jesus to save his son. He worked for a corrupt institution that had a part in the destruction and enslavement of many nations. He even said he was not worthy to have Jesus come under his roof. Yet, that did not stop him from going to the Lord. His son was about to die. Jesus said to him, “I have not seen such great faith in all of Israel.” It was worth it.
I knew a very well educated man who was very generous who died last week. I went to his funeral. The man’s cousin once asked him if he ever had any doubts about Christ due to his great education or any doubts with the Church because of all that has happened. He told the cousin, “Never.” His cousin said that it was the first time in his life that he ever answered a question with one word.
There may be a lot of reasons not to approach the Lord. But if you do, know that it will be well worth it. So when you come to the table of God, make sure you come hungry.Back to All Homilies