Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish

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Fr. Michael's Thoughts on Biblical Imagery: The Promise


(Fr Michael Boakye Yeboah: Vice Rector of St Gregory Seminary, Kumasi-Ghana)


            The word promise can be defined as a declaration that one will do or refrain from doing something specified. In the legal space, a promise can be seen as a legally binding declaration that gives the person to whom it is made a right to expect or to claim the performance or forbearance of a specified act.

            When I was growing up, I was nurtured at home and in a convent school to uphold promises once given. My Mum and the nuns who were responsible for my primary nurturing kept their promises and so, I saw keeping of promises as sacred. But once I entered high school, I saw a different picture to the word promise. Lying at the high school became a “virtue” while keeping of promises was for the fools. Those who lied and beat the system were hailed as heroes. It was really challenging times for some of us.

            Society has become artificial to some extent because of broken promises. In some parts of the world some young people are not attracted to the traditional marriage systems that involve vows and promises but have invented new norms likes co-habitation that give room for one to walk out of relationships freely when one partner breaks his partnership promises. The religious life has lost credibility in the eyes of many people because some religious people have failed to keep their vows. There are other institutions/professions that have also lost credibility as a result of broken promises and worst of all are some politicians. It seems it is becoming unimaginably impossible for some politicians to keep their promises. But this cannot be the case for the promises of Jesus to his flock for he says “You may be unfaithful but I am always faithful.”

            We serve a God who keeps his promises to his people. Jesus was the “advocate” of his disciples during his earthly ministry, and so when he announced his departure, they thought their defense shield of life will be taken away. As parents are shields for their children and once they are alive their children enjoy some sense of security, so the Lord promised his disciples that he will not leave them as orphans. Though he goes he will send another advocate to be with and by the power of the Holy Spirit they will do greater things than he did.

            Today we are all witnesses of a God who keep promises. We read of countless testimonies in the book of Acts of the Apostles. The Holy Spirit did not only protect the disciples but led them to perform marvelous miracles. Christ poured out the Spirit on his flock to nourish, heal, and protect them. The presence of the Holy Spirit can still be felt in our world. As the world mourns the loss of loved ones and seem hopeless, I am really hopeful because of the news that are trickling in. News coming in indicates that, Finland has recorded 6,228 cases with 5,000 full recovery, while Denmark has recorded 10,791 cases with 8,959 full recovery. In my own country Ghana, we have 5,638 recorded cases with 1,460 full recovery. The world is still waiting for a cure and a vaccine but what the Lord is doing for us with the recoveries has opened the doors of hope for us.

            I am 100% sure that our miracle is on the way, for the Lord promises: “For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” (Jeremiah 29:11). Remember those who sow in tears will reap with shouts of joy (cf. Psalm 126:5). Let remain hopeful for help is on the way. This too will pass, because we serve a God who keep his promises to a thousand generation.


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