April 3, 2020 – Friday of the 5th Week of Lent
Click here for the readings (http://www.usccb.org/bible/readings/040320.cfm)
The Jews were so angry at Jesus because the very person of Jesus was an insult to their belief. They wanted to stone him because they refused to believe in Jesus. They were filled with violence and malice against Him.
The God they knew was a distant and an angry God. Yet, these people who encountered Jesus did not see that kind of God in Jesus. They rather saw a God who forgave sinners, healed the sick and the broken-hearted and in mercy brought the dead back to life.
These signs were unimaginable and even unacceptable to their human reason. Hence, they thought that the kind of understanding and knowledge they have about God were sufficient enough. Consequently, anything that does not fall into the category of their understanding was perceived to be an insult and blasphemy.
This made their hearts to be constantly rigid and closed towards Jesus. However, despite their malice and unwelcoming attitude towards Jesus, the Lord did not retreat or lose heart. Jesus continued to do the will of the Father.
Moreover, what made Jesus strong was his confidence and complete trust in the Father. Jesus himself expressed this, “…the Father is in me, and I in the Father,” This was also the invitation of Jesus to those who continually refused and rejected him. The very works of Jesus, the many miracles he did were signs of the presence of the Father in him.
We shall see that as we enter closer to the Holy Week and commemorate the Suffering, Death and Resurrection of Jesus (Paschal Mystery), this confidence of Jesus with his Father was what sustained Him until the very end. Yet, doubts might have come to him while he was on the cross and about to die, but then, at the end Jesus offered completely his life to his Father.
This is also the invitation for us today on this Friday of the Fifth Week of Lent, that we take confidence with this God who from the very beginning has been with us. God is truly in us and among us.
Thus, no matter how difficult our situation is, even despite the challenges we face, God shall truly deliver us. Let us be more sensitive then, of the many opportunities that God gives us everyday to recognize His presence. As we recognize the Lord, certainly, we too shall become more confident in facing every hurdle and every battle that we encounter, because God is in us. Hinaut pa.
Jom Baring, CSsR