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“Even when they call us mad, when they call us subversives and Communists, and all the epithets they put on us, we know that we only teach the subversive witness of the Beatitudes, which have turned everything upside down to proclaim, ‘Blessed are the poor, blessed are those who thirst for justice, blessed are those who suffer.'”

In these stirring words of Bishop Oscar Romero shared with us on Wednesday night, we were reminded of the profound connection between discipleship and sacrifice. Romero spoke of Jesus’ identification with the suffering of the people, echoing the cries of the marginalized and oppressed. In the midst of injustice and selfishness, Romero saw Jesus passing by, bearing the weight of sin.

As Lutherans, we are called to confront the reality of discipleship in a broken world. Romero’s words challenge us to consider the cost of bearing witness to the Gospel. He acknowledges the harsh labels society may place upon those who speak out for justice and peace, yet he remains steadfast in his commitment to the subversive witness of Jesus’ teachings.

Romero’s call to live out our faith intensely in our own vocations resonates deeply. Whether as a church leader or an occasional participant, a stay-at-home parent or busy professional, a student or retiree, we are called to be true “microphones of God” in our surroundings. This requires determination, self-giving, and sacrifice – even to the point of giving our lives.

The concept of martyrdom may seem distant or daunting, yet Romero saw it as a grace, a willingness to offer one’s life for the cause of true liberation. He humbly acknowledged his unworthiness but embraced the possibility that his blood may become a seed of liberty, a sign of hope realized.

As we continue “considering the cost,” let’s heed Romero’s call to embrace the companion vocation of discipleship. Let’s be inspired to live out our faith boldly, knowing that even in sacrifice, we bear witness to the transformative power of Jesus’ love. May we echo Romero’s words in our own lives, becoming witnesses of God’s grace and agents of liberation in our world today.

May God’s peace find you today.  -Pastor Peter

Let us pray… Lord, grant us courage to embrace the cost of discipleship, following Jesus’ example of sacrificial love, and being true witnesses of your grace. Amen.