Daily Reflection – 4/34/19
Jesus answered the Jews, “My Father is at work until now, so I am at work.” For this reason the Jews tried all the more to kill him, because he not only broke the Sabbath but he also called God his own father, making himself equal to God. Jesus answered and said to them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, a son cannot do anything on his own, but only what he sees his father doing; for what he does, his son will do also. For the Father loves his Son and shows him everything that he himself does, and he will show him greater works than these, so that you may be amazed. For just as the Father raises the dead and gives life, so also does the Son give life to whomever he wishes. Nor does the Father judge anyone, but he has given all judgment to his Son, so that all may honor the Son just as they honor the Father. Whoever does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent him. Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes in the one who sent me has eternal life and will not come to condemnation but has passed from death to life. Amen, amen, I say to you, the hour is coming and is now here when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live. For just as the Father has life in himself, so also he gave to his Son the possession of life in himself. And he gave him power to exercise judgment, because he is the Son of Man. Do not be amazed at this, because the hour is coming in which all who are in the tombs will hear his voice and will come out, those who have done good deeds to the resurrection of life, but those who have done wicked deeds to the resurrection of condemnation. “I cannot do anything on my own; I judge as I hear, and my judgment is just, because I do not seek my own will but the will of the one who sent me.” (John 5:17-30)
If we ever wonder if God loves us, we only need to read these words! But if we question God’s love, maybe it’s because they are only words to us… We need to go beyond the words to an experience of God’s love. We need to believe these words are true and ask God to show us they are real. When our kids were growing up, I remember encouraging them to question all that we told them about God. I told them they could ask God to reveal Himself to them so that they would know He was real. I told them they couldn’t’ get to heaven on my faith, that they needed to make it their own. So, how can we open ourselves up to His Presence?
There are many ways to do this. We can experience God in the sacraments. Since they are “outward signs instituted by Christ to give grace,” we can receive a touch from God. We can look for God in scripture. As we read, we can invite the Holy Spirit to speak to our hearts and help us grow in our understanding of who God is for us. We can surrender our lives to the working of the Holy Spirit and let Him take over. He will correct us and remind us of all Jesus said when he was on earth. He will comfort us and guide us and teach us. We all need the Holy Spirit!
There is a set of YouTube videos called “The Wild Goose” that discuss this very topic and are well worth the time to watch them. (Come Holy Spirit! May we all ask for more of the Holy Spirit every day so that we will know for sure the depth and height and breadth of God’s incredible love for each of us. “Can a woman forget her baby at the breast, feel no pity for the child she has borne? Even if these were to forget, I shall not forget you.” Is 49:15
God is for us, He is behind us and before us. He loves us with an everlasting love and will never leave us or forsake us. May we throw ourselves every day into the arms of the God who loves more than we can ever ask or imagine! His promises are amazing for all who believe in Him: “In all truth I tell you, whoever listens to my words, and believes in the one who sent me, has eternal life; without being brought to judgment such a person has passed from death to life.” Jn 5:24. May we walk each day in His love knowing our future is secure in His Hands.
Prayer of The Day
Change my heart O God. Break my heart of stone and make my heart for love alone. Amen.
How hard is your heart? What do you need Jesus to soften and change within you so that you can experience genuine renewal at the end of this Lenten Journey?