“A little while and you will no longer see me, and again a little while later and you will see me.” So some of his disciples said to one another, “What does this mean that he is saying to us, ‘A little while and you will not see me, and again a little while and you will see me,’ and ‘Because I am going to the Father’?” So they said, “What is this ‘little while’ [of which he speaks]? We do not know what he means.” Jesus knew that they wanted to ask him, so he said to them, “Are you discussing with one another what I said, ‘A little while and you will not see me, and again a little while and you will see me’? Amen, amen, I say to you, you will weep and mourn, while the world rejoices; you will grieve, but your grief will become joy.” (John 16:16-20)
I am sure you remember, as I do, driving in a car with a small child to a special destination. The child was filled with excitement and anticipation. In one way or another, the child asked: “How much longer before we get there?” Perhaps you were the child and you asked the question.
All the joy felt by the child was well and good. Their full attention was on the destination. For that moment in time, there was nothing else.
As adults, we tend, at times, to slip into the same mode.
If it is a moment of celebratory joy, we focus with great anticipation on that moment. We focus on the “how long question.”
If we have problems and distress, we pray for relief and/or strength to carry us through. We focus not only on the “how long” but we often add the “why” question.
Jesus had to prepare the disciples psychologically for the sufferings they would encounter. He was teaching them to look beyond the moment and even the event. This is what Jesus Christ is trying to tell us today. That while we are here on earth we will have to suffer, weep and mourn for the sake of the Kingdom of God especially because that which the world does is the opposite of what God wants the world to do.
But we need to remember that Jesus is always here and providing for us. There is no need to worry or to be afraid, for if we are striving to follow Him and to serve Him in our lives, then we will certainly see Him again. And like the moment that a mother sees her newborn baby, there will be nothing but joy at that moment when we see Jesus.
As we look beyond the horizon, we must always remember that the certainty of the Resurrection is the certainty of newness, of new life for us. A prisoner has joy in being set free from captivity. But that joy is complete and made full when he or she puts the walls of the prison far behind them and in righteousness and confidence, really enjoys a life of freedom.
We need always to focus on the joy of the Resurrection. We need to look beyond the cross to see the joy and the hope of being reunited with Him who is pure love.
The brilliant light that lies beyond the horizon is that after all these sufferings, paradise awaits us in heaven where we will join the communion of Angels and Saints to live happily and eternally in the presence of God.
Prayer of The Day
“Lord, I do want to gaze upon You. I want to see Your splendor and glory. I want to see You risen from the dead and take great joy and delight in this reality. Help me, dear Lord, to experience the incredible joy that comes from knowing You, our Resurrected Lord. Jesus, I trust in You.”
Reflect, today, upon your own reaction to the reality of the Resurrection of our Lord. Spend some time today gazing upon the Risen Lord. Look at His victory. Look at His glory. Look at Him who calls you to a deep faith. With your eyes fixed on Him, all else that tempts you to discouragement simply fades away.