‘If there is any one who needs wisdom, he must ask God, who gives to all freely..it will be given him. But he must ask with faith…’ – James 1:5,6
Misunderstood to Understand
As far as science fiction movies go, The Matrix trilogy is in a world all by itself. The movie is about a world in which Artificial intelligence had taken over most of the world and has enslaved earth’s survivors in a virtual reality system as a farmed power source. But there are few who are free of this system. They seek to free those who are “plugged” into this virtual world and release the one (Neo) who is to bring an end to the war and restore peace in a world called “Zion”. This is the movie more or less. I thought that, in some way, the movie provides a provocative image of a humanity’s struggle in the world. Humans are trapped in a world of make believe in which they are truly slaves, and their redemption lies in being unplugged so that they become aware of higher realities, and through one who becomes like them, they will find redemption. You can image my shock when I found out that the movie makers had no intention of lending credence to faith. In fact, the movie betrays anti-religious sentiments.
Need to Unplug
This seeming confusion of meaning betrays the fact that we all are searching for something to hold on to as the truth. Some believe they will find it through science and technological breakthroughs. Others think that faith holds the key that unlocks human happiness. Others who are stuck in the middle vacillate between worldly and religious principles, seeking signs but not being patient enough to find answers. Jesus, in the gospel, tells us that if we seek scientific proof for faith, we may be wasting our time. Faith makes sense but often not scientific sense. To understand what God is doing, we must first abandon all we think we know. We must be willing to have our ideas of reality questioned and even thrown away. We will have to see that what we consider those things we believe will make us happy are really a chase after the wind. Weakness is strength, pain is a doorway to joy, and what appears like failure is a sign of success.
We only need to look closely at the life of Christ and see that this is possible. Through the paschal mystery (that is his life, ministry, death and resurrection), Jesus shows us that a new life is possible. In his life, he loved those who hated and sought to kill him. He healed and provided for those whom society rejects. He gave up his life so that we may have life in abundance. He shows us that only a prayer of self-abandonment will open us up to the goodness that God desires to give us. And unless we lay down our lives, we cannot receive the greater dignity of the children of God. For this to take place, we must unplugged ourselves from the system of doubt and connect to God through his gift of faith. Are you willing to make that move?
Father, thank you for opening my eyes to a new reality through the life and ministry, death and resurrection of Christ. By imitating his examples, may we be led through the events of our life to the joys of our heavenly homeland.
James 1:1-11; Ps 119:67-68,71-72,75-76; Mk 8:11-13