April 10, 2023 – Monday within the Octave of Easter
Click here for the readings (https://bible.usccb.org/bible/readings/041023.cfm)
Truth can indeed be easily manipulated or even covered especially when those who are faced with truth become threatened and disturbed by it. This is what we have heard on this Easter Monday as told to us by the Gospel of Matthew. The truth about the resurrection of Jesus was manipulated by people in power who also desired to advance their personal agenda. The soldiers who were witnesses of the Resurrection were paid not to tell what really happened but to create another story. These soldiers must have been captivated with awe and wonder in the event of the resurrection. Light must have pierced into their unbelieving hearts. However, what was sad in their story was when they were presented with the immediate comfort of money.
They were willing to cover the truth of the resurrection and create fake news for the sake of money. They accepted a corrupt offer to spill the untruth to people rather than to tell others of God’s power and mercy. Why was that? Is money more powerful than God? Certainly not. It is just deceiving and very tempting especially when people need it.
Nevertheless, apart from this sad story, we still have the women who showed to us how the resurrection of Jesus changed their life. The Gospel tells us that they were still fearful yet overjoyed. This means that despite the darkness they have experienced in the past days and the fear that enveloped them, the presence of Jesus filled them with so much joy.
The women did not succumbed to despair and fear unlike the soldiers who succumbed to money and corruption. The women continued to believe in Jesus in spite of the confusions and even in pain and suffering that they witnessed. They never lost their hope in Jesus.
This kind of attitude in them was showed in their action as they went to the tomb early in the morning. The tomb surely would remind them of the death of Jesus, meaning, of sadness and failure, of pain and disappointment. However, even in the midst of all of these, they found a reason to find light in the midst of darkness, to find hope in the midst of hopelessness and to find life in the midst of death.
And true enough, as they desired to see Jesus, they indeed saw and witnessed the glory of resurrection. This was how they also found their mission, and that was to be Jesus’ witnesses to others.
Now, as Jesus called them to tell other disciples about him, each of us now too is called to tell others of Jesus’ presence in our very life. With this, there are two invitations for us on this Easter Monday.
First. Money is not everything though money and riches can be deceiving and tempting when we are in need of it, that it will lead us to become dishonest, corrupt and abusive. This happened to the soldiers who exchanged for money the truth. They settled for their own comforts. However, that did not made them truly rich or satisfied with life. In fact, they are now seen like the “paid trolls” who merely repeat lies and fake news to deceive others and bring others to corruption and death.
Second, preach Christ and preach what is only true. Never be afraid to tell what we have seen, what we have heard and what we have witnessed. Tell others not just through our words but also through our actions that Christ is truly alive. Even a simple gesture of generosity to a person in need or a simple act of kindness to others is a way of sharing that Christ is truly alive in us. Kabay pa.