Consequently, I was the one to read St. Paul’s beautiful words to the Romans (Rom. 8:31b-39) at Mass this morning. It is such a beautiful, rich passage that I will quote it in full for your reflection.
If God is for us, who can be against us?
He did not spare his own Son
but handed him over for us all,
how will he not also give us everything else along with him?
Who will bring a charge against God’s chosen ones?
It is God who acquits us.
Who will condemn?
It is Christ Jesus who died, rather, was raised,
who also is at the right hand of God,
who indeed intercedes for us.
What will separate us from the love of Christ?
Will anguish, or distress, or persecution, or famine,
or nakedness, or peril, or the sword?
As it is written:For your sake we are being slain all the day;
we are looked upon as sheep to be slaughtered.
No, in all these things we conquer overwhelmingly
through him who loved us.
For I am convinced that neither death, nor life,
nor angels, nor principalities,
nor present things, nor future things,
nor powers, nor height, nor depth,
nor any other creature will be able to separate us
from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
I have always found this reading to be so beautiful, so powerful. Others must have also; it has inspired more than one song. After having meditated upon the reading (in preparation for reading at Mass), one of these song keeps coming to my mind. It’s kind of catchy: “Neither life nor death…Nor any other power…Can keep me from the love of Christ my Lord…Nothing in this world….Can keep His love from me…There is no rock like our God.”
I am grateful for the beauty of the words of scripture as well as for the gift of Christian / Catholic music. It can be helpful when cleaning, too, raising the mind to prayer and speeding up one’s work tempo. (Have you ever found you work faster if you’ve got peppy music? I have!)