The Gospel According to John (8:31-42)
Jesus said to those Jews who believed in him, “If you remain in my word, you will truly be my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” They answered him, “We are descendants of Abraham and have never been enslaved to anyone. How can you say, ‘You will become free’?” Jesus answered them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is a slave of sin. A slave does not remain in a household forever, but a son always remains. So if the Son frees you, then you will truly be free. I know that you are descendants of Abraham. But you are trying to kill me, because my word has no room among you. I tell you what I have seen in the Father’s presence; then do what you have heard from the Father.” They answered and said to him, “Our father is Abraham.” Jesus said to them, “If you were Abraham’s children, you would be doing the works of Abraham. But now you are trying to kill me, a man who has told you the truth that I heard from God; Abraham did not do this. You are doing the works of your father!” So they said to him, “We were not born of fornication. We have one Father, God.” Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love me, for I came from God and am here; I did not come on my own, but he sent me.”
Reflection: “The truth shall set you free”. Has there ever been a statement that makes more sense then this? We read this beautiful passage as we round the corner and head into Palm Sunday. Since God is all knowing, being truthful to God, and ourselves just makes sense. We can’t hide anything from Him so why put falseness between God and us.
To carry the emotional weight of lies and deceit takes more effort as well as the physical trauma to our heart and to our soul.
I recently watched a movie, made several years ago, called Good Will Hunting. I’m sure many of you have seen this movie, it captures the essence of this passage. It’s the story of a troubled man who is struggling in his adult life as a result of a traumatic childhood due to a physically and mentally abusive stepfather. His problems range from guilt to the fear of losing anything or anyone that he develops any type of close relationship.
He blames himself for all of his deficient social skills; he finds it impossible to face the truth that he is NOT the cause of these problems, but the result of the abuse. And after developing a close relationship with a therapist, who like him was also abused as a child finally finds peace in his life.
The peace comes in the form finding the truth in himself and a release of the burden of guilt the he himself put on his heart.
The story never mentions faith or the love of God; it does truly emulate the power of love and compassion, to the audience, who witnesses the fullness that only the truth can bring to two caring souls.
Action of the Day: If you have not been to reconciliation recently, now is the perfect time to do so. Remove that burden that continues to weigh you down and affecting how you live and how you love. And not just to those close to you, but to everyone that you encounter in your life. Always be true to your self.
Remember that the TRUTH shall set you free!