Posted by: livingscripture | April 18, 2013

Third Thursday of Easter

From the Word of the Day

 

“No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draw him, and I will raise him on the last day.”

             (John 6: 44)

 

How should we live this Word? pharisees-question-jesus-744x492[1]

Jesus’ lengthy discourse continues but now the interrogators are more defined.  It is not the crowds of before; now it is the Jews who are more diffident and refined, critical and provoking.  Their point of departure is the consideration, ‘who does He think He is?  How can He say that He descended from Heaven?  Jesus’ answer is equal to their stance and His word becomes more cutting and definite.  Jesus’ question rests on their capacity to recognize.  There are teachings that God offers to everyone. This is His way of drawing us.  There is no coercion, or determinism, or oppression. 

This attraction is tied to the desire to know and if this way is understood in its full meaning as intimate sharing, if it is accepted, it leads to listening, to reflecting, and allows us to arrive at Christ.  “Everyone who listens to the Father and learns from Him comes to me”.  If we do not come to Christ, do not arrive at Him, it means we have willingly diminished our capacity to know, to understand things, and to choose.

The subtle irony that pervades Jesus’ expressions introduces a second provocation.  If the Jews were so scandalized by hearing Jesus define Himself as the ‘bread of life’, what will they think when He says ‘the bread I will give is my flesh for the life of the world?’

Today in my pause for silent contemplation, I will listen to and reflect on the words of Jesus.  Do I receive Him as the Bread of Life?  Do I believe that the host contains His flesh and blood?  I will renew my faith in Jesus’ words and re-commit myself to Him. 

I come to You today, Lord, with the desire to know You.  Listening to Your Word helps me to move towards You in the one movement of charity that alone can animate and make my life joyful. 

The Voice of St. Paul

If I spoke all the languages of men and angels, but I did not have love, I would be a resounding flute or a squealing cymbal.  If I had the gift of prophecy and knew all the mysteries and all the sciences and had faith enough to move mountains, but did not have love, I would be nothing.  If I gave all my goods to feed the hungry, and gave my body to be burned, but did not have love, I would gain nothing.  (Cf 1 Cor. 13: 13)

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