May 12th, 2022

The Holy Gospel according to John (13:16-20)

When Jesus had washed the disciples’ feet, he said to them: “Amen, amen, I say to you, no slave is greater than his master nor any messenger greater than the one who sent him. If you understand this, blessed are you if you do it. I am not speaking of all of you. I know those whom I have chosen. But so that the Scripture might be fulfilled, the one who ate my food has raised his heel against me. From now on I am telling you before it happens, so that when it happens you may believe that I AM. Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever receives the one I send receives me, and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me.”

Reflection: Are you afraid of suffering and betrayal? How would you feel if one of your closest friends, one whom you loved dearly – wife or husband or child, goes around telling rumors about you, that everyone believed and looked at you with disgust? If you knew from the very start that that person would do such a terrible thing, would you allow him/her to be in your circle of family or friends in the first place?

Amidst our love and concern for someone, our hearts are often times tested; pierced by a thing called rejection. It even becomes one of our greatest fears in loving freely, to be rejected. But we are called not to love only when it is convenient for us, or when everything is happy and ok, or when we are loved back. The challenge is to love WHEN we are rejected; to love even the most unlovable.

Jesus showed this to us when He loved, served, and ate with Judas even when He knew he would betray Him. And He teaches this to us every time He embraces us – despite our mistakes, pride, selfishness, and sins. Sometimes, we repeatedly reject Him, but He loved us to the point of the Cross.

To love like Jesus is love’s challenge to us. It is difficult, if not impossible, because of our human weaknesses and limitations. Sometimes, even our greatest or highest effort is not enough. But we have to give everything we can nonetheless because at this point, it would no longer be us, but Christ fighting for us, pouring His abounding, ever-flowing love, to others through us. In the end, we only need to trust Him. May we conquer our fears and may we love as He does.

Action of the Day: Love is redefined by Jesus as “service,” helping another person in need. As followers of Jesus the question that is always before us is “How can I serve?” This will answer the question, “How can I love.”

We travel the dusty roads of life. Along those roads we will have many opportunities to love, to serve.. There are times, however, when we will not love, not serve. The dust, dirt, and hate of the world will accumulate on our feet. We will need to come to Jesus and have our feet washed – this is the time we need the gift of the Sacrament of Confession – Reconciliation. In order to serve with great love, we must have a pure heart.  

Audio Reflection:

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