“You are the salt of the earth.” // Matthew 5:13
I was on a four-day pilgrimage to a Marian shrine, and it was glorious: the pain, the satisfaction, the sweat, the grace during walking Confessions, the music-filled air, and chanted Rosaries. I had learned two important things on my first go-around the year before: the speed at which one walked determined the conversations had and also whether or not one could hear the witness talks shared over the bullhorn. On this particular day, speed was in my favor for both reasons.
A friend of mine began to tell me about a convert who was among us. He had been a Protestant mega-church pastor who decided to leave everything and become Catholic. I was intrigued! Just some moments after this conversation, a voice came over the bullhorn introducing the next speaker who would be sharing his testimony with us. To my surprise, it was the Protestant pastor-turned-Catholic, whom I had just heard about.
He shared his powerful testimony with us—those of us close enough to hear it—and at the end of his talk, he reflected on this very line of today’s Gospel: “You are the salt of the earth” (Matthew 5:13). I had often read past this line and skipped to the “city on the hill” part since it was much easier for me to understand. I knew of some of the common interpretations of the image of salt. Yet this convert shared with us a new perspective I had not heard.
He asked, “What does salt do?” There were many typical answers floating around in everyone’s mind, I’m sure. Then he interrupted these thoughts to say, “Salt makes us thirsty. We are called to make the world thirsty for God.” (Insert that mind-blown emoji because that is exactly how I felt). Many years have passed, and I still remember these words vividly. I hope I do not forget them.
You and I are called, sister, to live in such a way that we make others around us thirst for God—the God Who also thirsts for them (see John 19:28).