That day there was joy for all the Jews who lived in Nineveh. 

Tobit faced trial after trial. By the end of this story, however, his circumstances had flipped. Not only had his son returned with a bride, but Tobit could see again! Rejoicing, he proclaimed, “It was [God] who scourged me, and it is he who has had mercy on me” (Tobit 11:15).

So how did Tobit and his family get through their trials? They held fast to their faith. Tobit didn’t give up or turn away from God, even when he was being persecuted. He continued to pray and, in humility, do the next right thing (Tobit 1:3-21). Sarah didn’t give up either. She married once more, hoping that her husband would not fall to the demon as her other husbands had (7:12). And Tobit’s son, Tobiah, with his new wife, Sarah, offered a beautiful prayer to God asking for mercy and protection (8:5-8).

It’s during hard times like these that our faith can be tested. We can wonder why God is allowing bad things to happen to us or why he isn’t answering our prayers. It’s okay to ask these questions; sometimes it’s difficult not to. But what’s most important is that we don’t turn away from God. When we try our best to stay close to him, we open ourselves to his love, mercy, and grace so that we too can do the next right thing.

In Tobit’s case, the ending was a happy one. But whether we are in a time of prosperity or facing a trial, Tobit’s story shows us that as we cling to the Lord, he will sustain us. He will give us the grace to deal with whatever happens. Just as Tobit and his family had the archangel Raphael walking with them, we can trust that God will send his help to us in both expected and unexpected ways.

God has a good plan for you, even if you can’t see it at the moment. That plan is unfolding as you continue to remain close to him in good times and in bad times. And the good news is that a happy ending awaits you too. Just as Tobit and his family rejoiced in God’s mercy and providence, so you too will one day rejoice in heaven with your Father and all your brothers and sisters in Christ.

“Lord, help me to hold fast to you, whatever life brings my way.”

Psalm 146:1-2, 6-10
Mark 12:35-37
Tobit 11:5-17


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