That You May Have Life

(from the 2010 Magnificat Lenten Companion)

"But you do not want to come to me to have life." The words of Jesus cut to the heart of the Pharisees' rejection of him. Because of fear, and pride, and the hardness of their hearts, the Pharisses choose not to see the Truth standing right in front of them; they see his form, and hear his voice, but do not recognize the words of life and salvation he speaks to them. They search the Scriptures for eternal life, but in their refusal to accept fully the unfathomable love of the Father, they miss the point. How often we too miss the point out of stubbornness or fear. Jesus' words are directed straight at us, when we refuse to go to him, and especially when we choose to reject the divine medicine he offers us. Do we have the humility to come to him, to ask for the medicine that restores us to life? In the sacrament of confession, we are given the grace of hearing the voice of Jesus and seeing his form in the person of the priest. Our sins of pride, self-pity, envy, self-righteousness, lust, and all the rest are absolved, pulverized, and obliterated into nothingness, allowing us to fill the empty lamp of our heart with his life, and ignite it with his love.

Reflection based on John 5:31-47
Melinda Knight

Father of mercies, your Son Jesus testifies to the truth of your
love for us. Give us faith to help us see in him the fulfillment
of your promise of salvation.

Today's suggested penance: Send a thank-you note to someone to whom you owe a debt of gratitude.