Thou hast led in thy steadfast love the people whom thou hast redeemed,
thou hast guided them by thy strength to thy holy abode.
Israel experienced in miniature what the world is given in fullness by Christ. To put it simply, God saved Israel’s fat from the fire. They would never have gotten out of Egypt, or away from Pharaoh’s pursuing army, or through the Sinai Desert, or into Canaan without him. Even if, by dumb luck, they had managed to perform one of these feats, they would have been undone by their everlasting mulishness and stupidity (a fact of life much lamented by Moses). They would have remained a rabble of slaves and never become a nation. Only God could work those miracles. And what is true of God and them is true of God and us. Any Catholic who prides himself on being Catholic, as though it were an achievement and not a gift, is forgetting that we, just like ancient Israel, are recipients of God’s steadfast love and guidance, not clever people who cornered the market on God. As Pope John Paul II said, we do not possess the Truth, the Truth possesses us. Today, let us humbly thank God for his gracious gift of self-revelation and love. Without it, we’d be as stuck in slavery to sin as Israel was in slavery to Pharaoh.
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