Thursday after Ash Wednesday
Jesus plainly told His disciples about His death. ‘Great suffering… rejection… brutal death’ were all in store for Jesus, just because He loved you and me.
We read in John 3:16: “God so loved the world that He gave His only son…” This was God the Father’s way of proving His love for us. He loved us more than His only son. And Jesus too tangibly demonstrated this divine love by His suffering and death.
It is very clear that Jesus knew what was going to happen to Him. He knew how great His suffering would be. That was why He sweat blood at Gethsemane. The medical world today identifies this as ‘Hematidrosis’ caused by extreme physical or emotional stress. He knew it all and yet He embraced it willingly and lovingly to prove His love for us.
My friends! To endure suffering which befalls us is different from choosing to suffer on one’s own accord. Think about this: If a thorn pokes you while walking, you will pull it out and then manage the pain for a day or two with or without medical aid. But try to knowing step on a thorn. It would be almost impossible because neither your body nor your mind will cooperate. But here is our Lord who chose to suffer – to receive humiliation, scourges, nails, etc., just to show us how much He loves us.
Jesus candidly reminds us that even if you gain the whole world, it would be of no use if you lose your soul. And today, this Lord of love is inviting us to follow Him carrying our own little crosses daily if we want to be His disciples and to save our soul.
Are you ready to love Him in return? Are you ready to deny yourself? Remember that His yoke is easy and His burden is light, but it will surely give you eternal life (Mt 11:29-30).