The Remnant

Today’s first reading is from the Prophet Zephaniah. It is only three chapters long and it is filled with darkness, distress, destruction, death, doom, and despair. Yet, in the midst of all that – there is a message of hope, for a remnant of the people; people described as humble and lowly. People who take refuge in the Lord. People who remain faithful to God even as all around them crumbles and falls apart. A remnant who has already seen the Assyrian empire conquer most of the promise in the promised land. A remnant that can already see the Babylonian threat on the horizon. A remnant that even as they wonder how this all plays out in God’s plan, they are the faithful …. and hanging on. They recognize that they are blessed by God. It might be hard for us to see it, but they see it. And that challenges us just as the more famous beatitudes of today’s gospel also challenges us. Continue reading