An Uncomfortable Person
There are unexpected and unintended tribulations, but there are others that are the result of choices made. The price to pay for those who agree to carry out the difficult and unrewarding mission of the prophet is persecution. Even the nicest people, when they are interpreters of the message of Heaven, though it may seem strange, can become irritating, annoying, unbearable and be marginalized. The prophet is never praised for long by the crowds and still less by those in power, both political and religious. At first he can also be appreciated for his preparation, intelligence, moral integrity, but soon he is looked upon with suspicion, opposed and persecuted.
Jesus has not deceived his followers; he did not promise an easy life. He did not guarantee the approval and consent of people. He insistently reiterated that adhering to him would entail persecution: “A student is not above his teacher, not a slave above his master. If the head of the family has been called Beelzebul, how much more the members of the family” (Mt 10:24-25). “Still more—he added—the hour is coming when anyone who kills you will claim to be serving God” (Jn 16:2).
Regretfully recalling his past, Paul will acknowledge: “I do not even deserve to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God” (1 Cor 15:9). However he will also declare to have done it, “moved with zeal” (Phil 3:6), convinced to defend God and the true religion. It could happen again today.
To internalize the message, we repeat:
“You, Lord, are my hope, my trust from my youth.”