Trust. Just Trust.

Photo by Guido Jansen on Unsplash

By Chris Sparks

“Are not two sparrows sold for a small coin? Yet not one of them falls to the ground without your Father’s knowledge. Even all the hairs of your head are counted. So do not be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.” (Mt 10:26-33)

My aunt Helen, a long-time Marian Helper, sent me images of Jesus this past Christmas. One of them shows Jesus with a sparrow on His finger.

The other night, when I arrived home, I found that image lying face down on the floor. Picking it up, I realized that, in a sense, the sparrow had fallen to the ground. And I took it as a sign from our Lord, a reminder — I am worth more than many sparrows. He knows the fall of the sparrow; He knows my needs and intentions. I am in His arms.

It was a necessary reminder. Challenging times beset us all, after all, in this great dislocation after the pandemic, amidst the tragedy of losing a colleague and friend, and as we continue this work of Divine Mercy, Mary Immaculate, the Holy Souls, and serving Christ and His Church where the need is greatest.

And yet, I may be wrong. I can’t foresee all that will come, or even may come. Human prudence must he elevated and guided by the Holy Spirit for it to be consistently accurate, consistently reliable. But it’s also indispensable, as St. Faustina said:

Virtue without prudence is not virtue at all. We should often pray to the Holy Spirit for this grace of prudence. Prudence consists in discretion, rational reflection and courageous resolution. The final decision is always up to us. We must decide; we can and we ought to seek advice and light ... (Diary of Saint Maria Faustina Kowalska, 1106)

Your love, Jesus, gives the soul this great prudence in its dealings with others. (Diary, 695)

True virtuous trust is difficult, even for those of us to whom God has given abundant proofs of His fidelity, His provision, and His loving care. Trust is hard because it involves seeing truly, perceiving with accuracy the challenges and the demands ahead, but also keeping our gaze fixed on Jesus, walking forward on the water in the midst of the storm, trusting Him, loving Him enough to keep on going, to keep doing the impossible by the power of the Holy Spirit.

When the time is right, we are given the manna for one day at a time, our daily bread (see Ex 16:4-5), and when the time is right, we are entrusted with the produce of seven rich harvests in Egypt so that we can feed the world in its need during seven lean years (see Gen 41:47-57). We are given what is needed for the challenges ahead … and yet even as I write this, I remember some of the breathtaking, back-breaking challenges that people confront these days, challenges of illness and addiction, of terrible tragedies and loss, and I am silenced. The only answer to such suffering is God Himself, Divine Mercy Incarnate Himself.

We are called to trust in the face of mystery, to know that God Himself, the Divine Mercy present to us, is the only adequate answer to our questions, to our challenges.

Pray for me, that I may practice what I preach. I’ll pray for you.

Chris Sparks serves as senior book editor for the Marian Fathers. He is the author of the Marian Press book How Can You Still Be Catholic? 50 Answers to a Good Question.

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