Date: May 19, 2020 ()

Bible Text: First reading ACTS 16:22-34; Gospel JN 16:5-11 |


“Your right hand saves me, O Lord.”

When the ship is in trouble and capsizing, the captain will be heard instructing the crew and the passengers to abandon the ship, but most of the time, the captain stays and continues to maneuver. What does it mean for a captain to know his ship is sinking? Mostly, he regrets and considers himself a failure. Everything doesn’t make sense anymore, so he would rather sink with his boat.

Today’s first reading recalls the story of the conversion of a jailer. Like a captain in a sinking ship, he reached a point in his life that he felt like a total failure when he could no longer keep his job because, by a circumstance beyond his control, the prisoners could escape anytime. He might have felt useless when all his life he has been doing the simplest job - to watch and make sure the prisoners were locked, yet at this time he could no longer do it. In the first place, it’s a sad job staying in a dungeon and watching unhappy and miserable prisoners. Before his eyes is a sight of desolation and hopelessness. No wonder, how easily he thought of committing suicide.

How easily can we lose ourselves to despair when we are in the midst of so many troubles. In this time of the pandemic, when the assurance of finding a cure or a vaccine is still uncertain, it is not far to feel frustrated and afraid.

But what we have in today’s first reading is a beautiful story of God saving us from despair. It’s not only Paul and Silas who experienced being saved or being freed from the prison, the jailer and his whole household also received the Lord’s salvation. How grateful was the whole family that they had Paul and Silas took care in their house - they bathed their wounds and provided them food.

We join in the singing of the psalms today, “Your right hand saves me, O Lord.” For generations, the Lord has never stopped coming to rescue his people. We trust in the Lord that one day He will console us with His help.