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Trusting in God

Memorial of Saint Agnes

First Reading: 1 Samuel 18:6-9; 19:1-7

When David and Saul approached
(on David’s return after slaying the Philistine),
women came out from each of the cities of Israel to meet King Saul,
singing and dancing, with tambourines, joyful songs, and sistrums.
The women played and sang:

“Saul has slain his thousands,
and David his ten thousands.”

Saul was very angry and resentful of the song, for he thought:
“They give David ten thousands, but only thousands to me.
All that remains for him is the kingship.”
And from that day on, Saul was jealous of David.

Saul discussed his intention of killing David
with his son Jonathan and with all his servants.
But Saul’s son Jonathan, who was very fond of David, told him:
“My father Saul is trying to kill you.
Therefore, please be on your guard tomorrow morning;
get out of sight and remain in hiding.
I, however, will go out and stand beside my father
in the countryside where you are, and will speak to him about you.
If I learn anything, I will let you know.”

Jonathan then spoke well of David to his father Saul, saying to him:
“Let not your majesty sin against his servant David,
for he has committed no offense against you,
but has helped you very much by his deeds.
When he took his life in his hands and slew the Philistine,
and the LORD brought about a great victory
for all Israel through him,
you were glad to see it.
Why, then, should you become guilty of shedding innocent blood
by killing David without cause?”
Saul heeded Jonathan’s plea and swore,
“As the LORD lives, he shall not be killed.”
So Jonathan summoned David and repeated the whole conversation to him.
Jonathan then brought David to Saul, and David served him as before.

Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 56:2-3, 9-10A, 10B-11, 12-13

R. (5b) In God I trust; I shall not fear.
Have mercy on me, O God, for men trample upon me;
all the day they press their attack against me.
My adversaries trample upon me all the day;
yes, many fight against me.
R. In God I trust; I shall not fear.
My wanderings you have counted;
my tears are stored in your flask;
are they not recorded in your book?
Then do my enemies turn back,
when I call upon you.
R. In God I trust; I shall not fear.
Now I know that God is with me.
In God, in whose promise I glory,
in God I trust without fear;
what can flesh do against me?
R. In God I trust; I shall not fear.
I am bound, O God, by vows to you;
your thank offerings I will fulfill.
For you have rescued me from death,
my feet, too, from stumbling;
that I may walk before God in the light of the living.
R. In God I trust; I shall not fear.

Gospel: Mark 3:7-12

Jesus withdrew toward the sea with his disciples.
A large number of people followed from Galilee and from Judea.
Hearing what he was doing,
a large number of people came to him also from Jerusalem,
from Idumea, from beyond the Jordan,
and from the neighborhood of Tyre and Sidon.
He told his disciples to have a boat ready for him because of the crowd,
so that they would not crush him.
He had cured many and, as a result, those who had diseases
were pressing upon him to touch him.
And whenever unclean spirits saw him they would fall down before him
and shout, “You are the Son of God.”
He warned them sternly not to make him known.

NAB

jan 21

Today, on the Memorial of Saint Agnes, we can be comforted by a young girl’s steadfast and firm faith in God. While dragged naked in the streets at the age of 13 to a brothel for not succumbing to a king’s advances, she merely bent her head as her hair grew to cover her. As I read over her story, I can hear Saint Agnes through the pages:

Now I know that God is with me.
In God, in whose promise I glory,
in God I trust without fear;
what can flesh do against me?

Saint Agnes was offered jewels, wealth, and probably great notoriety for her time. She knew His voice, and followed Him, preferring Him over anything offered to her, even death. Her steadfast faith, her flat replies of “no” on earth, led her to eternity in Heaven in communion with all the saints.

As the Psalmist says today, we shall not fear while trusting in God. Whatever the trials are in your life, whatever the pains and agonies, He is here by your side. Here he protected his young sweet daughter and He will protect you as well.

Thinking about our faith and how sometimes it can be a source of confusion, conflict and anger, can we remember what we are meant for? Can we remember that God is with us, even in those moments when we are tempted to respond in anger? Can we bow our heads in prayer and allow for God to cover us? We need to trust in God and not fear, He will  care for us and and help us to do what is right by our families, society, our Church, and Himself.

Cristina Trinidad is a married, stay-at-home mother of two children. She recently opened an Etsy shop named after Luke 1:38, where she offers inspirational and faith-based hand embroidered designs. You can visit her shop and find out more about her here

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