Scripture scholars believe that Matthew 21:42, actually taken from Psalm 118:22, was meant to speak of the death and resurrection of Jesus himself. However, as I have noted throughout the postings of this blog for the last few weeks, look at the examples or models that Jesus uses. Prayerfully consider if the words strike home for you. If particular words stop you, listen to the words again: what is the Holy Spirit trying to teach you?
"The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone" (Mt. 41:42). For me the Holy Spirit put something of a different consideration in my heart and mind ... actually one that I like better than what the scripture scholars suggested.
When we are faced with struggles or battles in our lives, and we do know they come along more often than once, what does it mean to us? Consider the armor or equipment one going into battle has to wear. There are two choices that come to my mind: (1) spanking new armor or equipment or (2) used armor and equipment. For me it would be the used armor or equipment that I would choose. Why? Chinked armour or scarred equipment present themselves are protection that has weathered a battle. The bright, shiny armor or similar equipment does not show me that it has been a source of protection. I might believe that I would be using it for a first time if I used it to confront a challenge. I would much rather bring the tried and true to my struggles.
At times in our lives we fail, we don't succeed as we would like. Some might feel that there is little use for who and what we are because we have not succeeded. We may have sinned and others know about it. We may not be chosen for something because it is known that there were times we we did not succeed. You remember what Jesus quoted from the Psalms: "The stone that the builders have rejected as become the cornerstone." Jesus is telling you and me that our armor or equipment for the challenges may be dented or scarred but he wants us to be a part of his army. Despite our sinfulness, our past failures, there are times when God will call upon us to the the "cornerstone" of project. Despite our chinked armor, God wants you or me when he wants us. He sees that goodness in you, in me. He knows what we can become for him.
Every Cardinal who will soon enter the Conclave and who knows that he has made mistakes in his lifetime, if he is truly humble, will realize that despite those failures God wants, God needs that person for a special mission. Perhaps we cannot fail to realize that God chooses the armor with chinks because He knows it has survived battles! We, too, have to be ready for those moments when the Spirit calls us to a challenge we feel we cannot tackle. Remember what Jesus was teaching: Perfectionists may reject you or me because of some failures. Jesus, on the other hand, can deal with imperfections because with them comes humility!