Life is fragile and the future uncertain

Every week we seem to find ourselves shocked and appalled by the events which headline the news and social media. As Pope Francis suggests, the world seems to be at war or certainly we live in constant fear and suspicion.

Every week we seem to find ourselves shocked and appalled by the events which headline the news and social media. As Pope Francis suggests, the world seems to be at war or certainly we live in constant fear and suspicion.

Life has never seemed so fragile as we worry about where is safe to travel and will our family and friends be free from harm? With bombings killing hundreds in the Middle East, multiple murders and mounting death tolls on the continent, we sense much fear and anxiety. The murder of Fr Jacques Hamel in Normandy raises more questions regarding what we often take for granted, the freedom to celebrate our faith. Yet we can fall into the dangerous trap of allowing ourselves to be polarised by the crimes of those who use religion as no more than a cover for hatred and violence. Like many aspects of life, faith without reference to the God of love and mercy can become a tool for evil and division.

With so many people left alienated and abandoned by the currents and politics of modern society, young men and women left feeling hopeless and bereft of opportunity; they can become vulnerable to the temptations of fundamentalism. When your world is no more than endless days filled with emptiness, the offer of having something to live and die for can become appealing. As humans it’s in our DNA, in our very nature being made in the imagine and likeness of God to want to belong with others, to have meaning in our lives. As a society and as a generation what are we offering the young, what values are we passing on. The way we live our lives reflects what we hold as valuable and what we hold dear. If we simply live for the now, only concerned with what we possess then we continue to witness to a life filled with emptiness which lacks meaning. We all require something to live for, an ideal which shapes our attitude to life, conditions our actions and reflects the deepest core of who we are.

Otherwise we drift from day to day with no reference points to guide our actions. Ultimately, with no anchor we become prey to fear. Fear is the biggest disease which eats away at our lives and separates us from one another. If we have no idea of our place in the world or what unites us as human beings we can allow suspicion, jealously and hatred to shape our actions and attitudes. We live in a global society and if we truly believe we are all God’s children then what happens in one part of the world should shocks us as much as the events on our doorstep. Likewise, we have an opportunity to offer the world hope in the face of violence and fear. Yes, life is fragile, the future uncertain but if we put our trust in Christ, we can be reassured by the God who walks with us. The greatest gift we can offer the world is the hope, which reminds us that the violence of Good Friday is not the end of the story, for the love of God conquers hatred and death. Through witnessing to love and mercy, we can remake a broken world.