Dear Father and my Friends in Christ
Psalm 17:1bcd, 2-3, 6-7
Job, in today's first reading, is confronted with a question we have all asked at one time or another: "Why must I suffer if I have not done anything wrong?"
Throughout the book of Job, his friends assure him that he must have done something wrong, even if he had forgotten what it was. Still, Job persisted in his innocence, and even demanded that God stand trial before him. When Job got his wish to appear before God, Job realized how foolish he had been and became silent.
However, Job's question remained unanswered. It would take Luke's Gospel to offer a tentative answer when Jesus walked with His disciples on their way to Emmaus. In His discussion with them, Jesus asked, "Did not the Messiah have to suffer to enter into his glory?" (see Luke 24:26) Still, it would take their seeing Him in the breaking of the bread, to return to Jesus' way in Jerusalem.
Jesus' answer offers us a clue to our question, “Why must we suffer?” It will not be found in any abstraction of the reason for suffering in general, but it will point to where the answer must be found -- in your heart! Maybe that was why the hearts of the disciples were burning on the way with Jesus.
Father Ed Bakker