Today’s first reading moves beyond the example of what the faith of Jesus and the saints enabled them to endure. The reading focuses on your need to endure the trials of life. So, listen to how it challenges you to be worthy of the company of the saints.
“In your struggle against sin you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood.” That’s true, isn’t it?
The passage next says that in his dealing with you, the Lord is like an old time very strict, but very loving father; one who lived by the rule, “Spare the rod you spoil the child.”
“My child, do not disdain the discipline of the Lord or lose heart when you are reproved by him; for whom the Lord loves, he disciplines, and he whips every child he acknowledges as his own.”
I once heard a quotation from Isadora Duncan, America’s renowned ballerina. In drilling her students, if she saw a girl extend her physical tolerance, she would ask her, “Wasn’t that a beautiful pain?”
God drills us to value even our pain.