Our world will be transformed when all of God’s children come to know their King! (Anonymous)
These beautiful words recently shared by a bishop are such a great reminder of Who we celebrate today—Jesus Christ, King of the Universe! I remember as a young child, growing up atop a very large hill. My siblings, cousins, neighborhood friends and I used to enjoy playing, “King of the Mountain!” If you’re familiar with this childhood game, it involved all the participants climbing to the highest of heights (maybe a big dirt pile or a tall jungle gym—whatever we could find!) and then proclaiming, “I’m KING of the Mountain!”
This silly but fun climbing game rings true for plenty of people today. Many want to be seen or known as “king” of this or that…to have the best home, the fanciest car, oodles of material possessions or to have the most impressive job title or social status; but does the quest to be “King of the Mountain” or the accumulation of material possessions or status eliminate our worries or concerns? Of course not!
In today’s First Reading from Ezekiel, we are consoled with the image of Christ the King as a Good Shepherd. Amid suffering, discord, challenges, and all of our worries about family, children, finances, world peace (and the countless other things that may keep us awake at night!), we are reminded that Christ, our King, remains firmly seated on His Throne! He is the Alpha and the Omega, the One who comes to Shepherd His people. His life, death and resurrection prove to us, beyond measure, that our King isn’t afraid to smell like His sheep! Our King came to us as an innocent, helpless infant, born in a stable, completely reliant on His parents to help him grow and flourish in this world. He left this world, beaten, bruised, mocked, and ridiculed, wearing a crown of thorns, and hanging from a cross – hardly what we envision from the King of Kings.
But why? Why would our King immerse Himself in the filth of a stable or subject Himself to such immense suffering to the point of death? Christ the King believes that you and I are worth it…every ounce of His pain and suffering. He deemed us worthy. What a sobering reality that witnesses to each of us the importance of humility, complete trust and total surrender to God, the Father, and His will. I don’t know about you, but humility, surrender and trust are just a few of my greatest challenges in this life! Like many people and like Frank Sinatra so famously sang, I want things “my way” and in my time frame, but alas, God’s way and His timing are always best!!
The Prophet Ezekiel beautifully reminds us that when we trust in God’s plan and surrender to His will that all will be well. We need not worry about the many people, situations, and things we uselessly spend time worrying about. Christ the King is inviting us to pray and surrender ALL to Him and watch how our lives and our world will be transformed! He is a God of promises who makes ALL things new!
I myself will look after and tend my sheep. As a shepherd tends his flock when he finds himself among his scattered sheep, so will I tend my sheep. I will rescue them from every place where they were scattered when it was cloudy and dark. I myself will pasture my sheep; I myself will give them rest, says the Lord GOD. The lost I will seek out, the strayed I will bring back, the injured I will bind up, the sick I will heal, but the sleek and the strong I will destroy, shepherding them rightly. (Ezekiel 34:11b-12, 15-16)
JESUS, MY LORD, MY GOD, AND MY KING, I TRUST IN YOU!
Colleen M. Donohoe was born and raised just North of Boston, the youngest of 7 children. She is the proud “Auntie” to 17 nieces and nephews and 5 great nieces and nephews who bring tremendous joy to her life! For the past 25 years, Colleen has served in a variety of roles in the Archdiocese of Boston, primarily as a Catholic Educator. After spending many years as a theology teacher and campus minister, she currently serves as the Associate Superintendent of Catholic Identity and Respect Life Educator for the Archdiocese of Boston Catholic Schools. It is a great honor and blessing for Colleen to continue little Christina Dangond’s legacy to “Build the Faith” wherever and however God calls.