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  • Writer's pictureFr. Austin

Reaching Your Destination

How many of you here use GPS in your car to find where you are going? How many of you use the GPS even when you are not looking for a specific place? I often see cars pass me on the highway – or even on side streets – with their map apps on, even when I’m sure they know where they are going. I use my “Apple Maps” app often when I am visiting a parishioner or looking for some place I have never been before. Last year, I travelled around Ireland with the help of that app. Each day, I plugged in the phone, typed in the place I wanted to visit, then dutifully followed the directions – even when I was on a road that seemed to be built for one donkey and a cart. And it never failed me. I experienced some wonderful things by following Apple Maps.

Do you do that? Are you so trustful of your GPS system that you will go wherever it tells you? A lot of us do. These systems have become so ubiquitous and reliable that it is almost as necessary as our speedometer or windshield wipers. Finally, as people who have driven in darkness, we have seen a great light – and it appears as the cool glow of our GPS system on our dashboard!

What about our spiritual journeys? How do we navigate our walk with God? Do we even know? Are we wandering aimlessly, hoping that things will fall into place for us and we will be happy? Or do we follow a definite route – with a plan?

We believe that God cares about us and has a definite plan for each of us. If this is the case, then certainly He would provide us with a plan or a roadmap to help us fulfill that plan in our lives. As Christians, as people of faith, the Holy Scriptures are our GPS system! It is through the Word of God that we learn about God and His immense love for us; we learn of the love story between God and His People; we hear the promises spoken through the prophets and the holy ones of the Old Testament; and we learn about the fulfillment of those promises in the story of Jesus Christ in the gospels. More than that, the Word of God offers us an invitation to follow Jesus and to participate in that great story of salvation as collaborators in the mission of the Church. Sacred Scripture is the foundation of our hope, because the Scriptures are the Word of God.

Each week, we are blessed to listen to God’s Word as Mass and to be formed as a unified People of God. As St. Paul says today: "I urge you, brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree in what you say, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and the same purpose." Through the Word of God, therefore, we find our common ground and our common call – our mission to serve the world as a unified Church, guided by the Scriptures – not by our own ideas, not by our own agendas, but by God’s will and wisdom, found in the Holy Scriptures.

This weekend, we are called to appreciate and celebrate the Word of God and the place that it holds in the Church and in our individual lives. Every home should have a shared Bible in it – just as almost every car now has some sort of GPS system! It is the light that illuminates our path. Just as Jesus "went through all of Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom," so too does the gift of Sacred Scripture guide us along our paths of life, leading us to encounter Christ and then to share Him with others.

When I am in my car and feel totally lost, my GPS has always been able to bring me home. In strange territories, that mapping app has never failed to get me to where I am going. Most of us have complete trust in that GPS system (what did we do without it?!). This should be even more true about God’s GPS system! Sacred Scripture is God’s roadmap to redemption – the story of where we have been and the promise of where we are going. As the People of God, we are the People of this Book. Following God’s guidance, we know that we will surely reach our destination.

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