28 Feb 2018: What do you want of the Lord?

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Wednesday of the Second Week of Lent

Reading 1:JER 18:18-20; Gospel: MT 20:17-28

The Gospel reading of the day narrates to us three different instances that seem to happen in a sequence.

A closer reading of the text will exhibit the lack of understanding on the part of the apostles. Here was their Lord and Master foretelling to them what a horrific and painful death He would have to undergo, but instead of being overwhelmed with sorrow, two of the apostles (through their mother) approached Jesus for positions of power and the rest were upset not with regard to what would be done to Jesus, but with regard what James and John wanted to be done for them. This is a very clear indication that the apostles were full of their own whims and fancies that they could not really gauge the seriousness of what Jesus was talking about. They came to Jesus with their own agendas. Hence Jesus had to give them a short discourse yet again reminding them about their true call – to serve and not to be served.

On reading this Gospel passage, I was thinking how foolish the apostles have been. They were with Jesus for three years, and this was the third time that Jesus was foretelling His death. Yet the apostles lacked understanding. While Jesus came to save them and use them as instruments of salvation, they were busy seeking their own interests. As I was entertaining this thought, I slowly realized that I am far worse than the apostles. I was born a Catholic and raised in the Christian faith from childhood. I have read and heard Bible passages in numerable times; have attended retreats, recollections, etc. Yet whenever I come into the presence of God, it is to ask for some worldly blessing on my behalf or that of others. While Jesus was busy showing His love for me with outstretched arms on the Cross and calling me to eternal life, I was busy loving the world and worldly things. In general, matters of the soul are the least sought after blessings.

How about you? What are you asking of the Lord today? Is it for happiness in this life or for happiness in eternal life? Jesus did not come to keep you happy in this life, rather to lead you to eternal happiness. Are you ready to drink His cup, take up the Cross and walk towards eternal life for which Jesus sacrificed Himself?

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