Tuesday of the Fifth Week of Easter
Jesus said to his disciples: "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give it to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid. You heard me tell you, 'I am going away and I will come back to you.' If you loved me, you would rejoice that I am going to the Father; for the Father is greater than I. And now I have told you this before it happens, so that when it happens you may believe. I will no longer speak much with you, for the ruler of the world is coming. He has no power over me, but the world must know that I love the Father and that I do just as the Father has commanded me."
Introductory Prayer: Lord, you have called me many times. Many times I have turned a deaf ear to you, not believing the truth and absolute value of you helping me carry my responsibilities, hopes and even burdens. Help me today, Lord, to believe in you more; help me to testify to you, Lord; help me to be amongst your flock that I may follow you. When I think it is too hard, help me to seek you in prayer and to know what you tell me, so that I may know you well before I prayerfully achieve eternal presence in Your grace. Amen
Author: Father Patrick Langan, LC
1. Activism: In today's culture, many people believe, almost religiously, that what they do will eventually make them someone. They believe that from doing flows being, since their activity defines them. This makes it easy for them to be exploited. In nineteenth century America, a slave was often not told his birthday, so he could never really know who he was. He was just made to work. This same temptation exists today. Many people work such long hours — some as a means of escape from difficulties or responsibilities at home; others for the satisfaction they feel seeing a job completed; still others, just to earn more money and to be able to afford a more comfortable life. However, these are all manifestations of the same slavery.
2. My True Identity: With his example, however, Christ shows us a different way of life, a way that goes against the current. First, I have to be. Then my doing will flow from my being. Christ says again and again: I am the Son of my Father. Now I will act accordingly. When Moses asked God of the burning bush who he was, he said, “I AM who I AM.”
Who am I? What defines me is my relationship to God. Think of it like this: I have the privilege of being a child of God. God loves me and wants me to know Him more so that love can flourish. This is something truly worthwhile. This is who I really am, and I should act accordingly, as Christ taught me.
3. True Peace: Christ's great peace comes as a consequence of meditating on and living out who I really am. When I meditate, I discover that I am God’s creature. Suddenly, I find the strength to face reality. Others will be unable to exploit me, and I will stop exploiting others because I am – and they are – children of God. My dignity derives from this fundamental truth: I was created in God’s image and likeness. I came from God, and he is inviting me to return to him and be happy with him for all eternity.