Daily Reflection – 6/5/19
Lifting up his eyes to heaven, Jesus prayed, saying: “Holy Father, keep them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one just as we are. When I was with them, I protected them in your name that you gave me, and I guarded them, and none of them was lost except the son of destruction, in order that the scripture might be fulfilled. But now I am coming to you. I speak this in the world so that they may share my joy completely. I gave them your word, and the world hated them, because they do not belong to the world any more than I belong to the world. I do not ask that you take them out of the world but that you keep them from the evil one. They do not belong to the world any more than I belong to the world. Consecrate them in the truth. Your word is truth. As you sent me into the world, so I sent them into the world. And I consecrate myself for them, so that they also may be consecrated in truth.” (John 17:11-19)
Today Jesus continues his prayer for his disciples. He prays for their continued loyalty to the gospel message and for unity among them. He has kept them true to his name. They have accepted the message of Jesus and, because of that, they will be hated by the world as Jesus himself was hated. Because, like Jesus, they do not identify with the world and its values and priorities.
At the same time, Jesus makes it very clear that he is not asking that they be removed from the world’s environment, only that they be protected from its evil influences. It is only by being in the world that they will be able to communicate the Gospel message. Armed with truth, with the integrity of Jesus himself, he is sending them into the midst of the world. That is where they are to do their work.
Jesus prays that they be consecrated in truth, the truth of God himself. This truth does not consist of a set of dogmas. Rather it consists in the living out lives of perfect integrity and wholeness, in perfect harmony with the will of the Father and the Way of Jesus and dedicated to bringing that truthfulness and integrity to the world. They do this by living lives of love, a love expressed in service to the well-being of all.
Let each of us then pray today
– for the unity among us which Jesus prayed for in his disciples
– that we may realize that, if we want to give witness to the Gospel, we must be fully inserted into the world by which we are surrounded. To be ‘holy’ is not to escape and distance ourselves physically from that world, which is what many are tempted to do or even think is the right thing to do.
– that we may be people of complete integrity, that we may be filled with truth and sincerity so that what people see in us is what we truly are and wish to be: disciples of Jesus.
Prayer of The Day
Lord, I believe in you and all that you have revealed for our salvation. I hope in you because of your overflowing mercy. Every single act of yours on this earth demonstrated your love for us. Your ascent into heaven before the eyes of the Apostles inspires my hope of one day joining you there. I love you and wish you to be the center of my life.
The Gospel of Jesus Christ marks us; we work for the glory of God, a task that translates in a better service for today’s men and women’s lives. This means working for true human communication, true happiness of the person, to increase the joy of the sad ones, to exert compassion on the needing… In short: to be open to making Life a better place.