Mt 10: 26-33

“So have no fear of them; for nothing is covered up that will not be uncovered, and nothing secret that will not become known. What I say to you in the dark, tell in the light; and what you hear whispered, proclaim from the housetops. Do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.

Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. And even the hairs of your head are all counted. So do not be afraid; you are of more value than many sparrows. “Everyone therefore who acknowledges me before others, I also will acknowledge before my Father in heaven; but whoever denies me before others, I also will deny before my Father in heaven.

New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.

More Than Many Sparrows

The United Nations’ latest estimate of the world’s population is 7.8 billion people.  In a sea of so many faces, it’s easy to assume that God doesn’t have time to listen to one more sad story of our struggle.  But Jesus reassures us that our heavenly Father is infinitely aware of the needs of all his creations, even the flight of the smallest sparrow or Sparough.  (Admittedly God’s job of counting the hairs on my head is getting easier year by year!)

Jesus helps us remember that, however long we walk upon this earth, our footsteps are heard by the one who gave us the ability to walk.  So, let us stand in the assurance that each step is a gift, every breath a blessing, every blink of our eyes an invitation to remember that we will one day gaze upon the face of the one who sculpts every human heart with love.

—Fr. J. Michael Sparough, SJ, (pronounced “sparrow”) is a retreat master, writer, and spiritual director at the Bellarmine Jesuit Retreat House, in Barrington, IL.  His weekly video reflections can be viewed at Heart to Heart.  


Abba, Who counts every hair on my head,
Who watches the sky for a sparrow’s fall,
Change the channel of my thought
From sitting in my sorrow, counting my loss, forgetting my gain.
Raise my eyes to your gaze. Press my ear to your breast
To hear there and everywhere the eternal heartbeat of your mercy!

—Fr. J. Michael Sparough, SJ