The disciples said to Jesus; “Now you are talking plainly, and not in any figure of speech. Now we realize that you know everything and that you do not need to have anyone question you. Because of this we believe that you came from God.” Jesus answered them, “Do you believe now? Behold, the hour is coming and has arrived when each of you will be scattered to his own home and you will leave me alone. But I am not alone, because the Father is with me. I have told you this so that you might have peace in me. In the world you will have trouble, but take courage, I have conquered the world.”
Human life has two facades, one filled with joy that brings us together and the other filled with suffering that scatters us. Very often in this dispersion we discover the true friends who listen to us and accompany us. Paradoxically, it is these painful moments, filled with sorrow and suffering, that help us to live our lives fully, to discover our strengths and limitations, and to be true.
In this moment, by applying the Gospel values, this life, once lived in all sincerity, accepting our pains and sorrows as the crosses of the day, we mark our identity in the society where we live, and show a new way, bringing great support and hope to our brothers and sisters, who live this life with some difficulty. In this moment of distress and suffering, when we find ourselves alone, Jesus invites us to trust in Him and in His presence. The Cross is a sign of hope and victory. Thus, we will become to our brothers and sisters, the true image of Christ, an image full of love and mercy.
Action of the day: Live in the presence of God.
“Take courage, I have conquered the world.”
Fr. Jordi CASTELLET i Sala
(Sant Hipòlit de Voltregà, Barcelona, Spain)
Today, we may have the feeling that the world of faith in Christ is weakening. Many are symptoms against the fortitude and courage we would like to receive from a life integrally based on the Gospel. Consumerism, capitalism, sensuality and materialism values are very much in fashion and against any representation that may be in tune with the evangelical demands. Nevertheless, this combination of values and life ways do not provide either our own personal plenitude or our peace; in fact, it rather brings an intimate feeling of discomfort and uneasiness. Could not it be because of this circumstance that, today, we see lots of people in public sulking, lost in though and worrying about a rather obscure future, most probably because they have pledged it against the cost of a car, a flat or some holidays they simply cannot afford?
Jesus' words inspire confidence: “Take courage, I have conquered the world.” (Jn 16:33), that is, through his Passion, Death and Resurrection, He has attained the eternal life, life with nothing to stop it, a limitless life because it has overcome all limits and all difficulties.
We, soldiers of Christ, can overcome these difficulties too, as He did, in spite of the fact we may have to go throughout our life through many deaths and resurrections, never wanted but certainly assumed by the very Paschal Mystery of Christ. For “deaths” indeed are, losing a friend, parting with a beloved person, the failure of a project or the limitations our own human weakness impose upon us…
But “in all these things we conquer overwhelmingly through him who loved us” (Rm 8:37). Let us be witnesses to God's love, because He has, with us, “done great things” (Lk 1:49) and has given us his help to overcome all difficulties, even death, because Christ is sending us the Holy Spirit.