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  • Writer's pictureOlufunmilayo Adekusibe

WHAT CAN YOU DO IN THE NAME OF LOVE?


 

Today’s Readings:

Acts 25:13-21

Psalm 103:1-2,11-12,19-20

John 21:15-19

 

Love is a mystery. Jesus had revealed to Paul: “Courage! You have borne witness for me in Jerusalem, now you must do the same in Rome” (Acts 23:11). Paul’s witness to Christ makes sense to most Christians but it is a complete puzzle to others and non-believers.


We hear from Festus, the Roman governor of Judea, call Jesus “a dead man” in his address to King Agrippa and Bernice. By referring to Jesus as dead, Festus is convinced that a dead person cannot come back to life. In the same statement, we see the seriousness of the case the Jews have against Paul. Belief in the resurrection changes our perception of life totally. The resurrection of Christ instils fresh hope that the world is not all we are living for. The Jews were not comfortable with this. They felt slighted that one of their strongest allies who fought for them, is now discrediting them by preaching the resurrection of Christ, the leader of the Way. By his actions, Paul shows that encounter with Christ must lead to faith, and faith builds love for God and for one’s neighbour.


The resurrection of Christ is such a serious matter that we cannot stand idly by. We must make a decision to stand with Jesus and testify that He is truly risen and is the hope of our salvation. Our testimony to Christ must be evident in all we say and do, with no room for contradictions. To contradict your faith with your action makes you a joker. Jesus in the Gospel of John 21:15-19 asks Peter three times, “Do you love me?” It is not enough to simply mouth “I love Jesus”. You also have to consciously bring others to the truth of Jesus’ grace and salvation (“If you love me keep my commandments” – John 14:15).


How then should we conduct ourselves today?

  • Abide in the Holy Spirit: The Holy Spirit assures us of God’s abiding presence and that we are called to a higher and better form of life at the end of our earthly pilgrimage. “Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God” (Colossians 3:2).

  • We cannot continue in our worldly ways: Our preoccupation must extend beyond just living from one day to the next, without a thought to the graces and opportunities God gives us to grow in mind, body and soul until we attain “the unity of the faith and of the recognition of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to a measure of stature of the fulness of Christ” (Ephesians 4:13).

  • Live for others: Jesus reminded Peter to feed his sheep as evidence of his love for Him. Christ is “The Anointed One” and Christians are anointed in Baptism in order to bring the blessings of Christ into the lives of everyone we meet.

  • Are you concerned about the spiritual and material wellbeing of the people you meet or are you purely concerned about what you can get or take from them?

  • Live a life of Joy: Joy is the fruit of the Spirit by which we are reassured of God’s abiding presence in our lives, regardless of whatever is going on at the moment. God is with us (Immanuel). Ask God to constantly fill your heart with the joy of His abiding presence and He will bless you in Jesus’ name. Amen.

  • Repent of your sins: Will you find yourself returning to your old life of sin (worldliness, selfishness, unforgiveness and lack of prayerfulness), call yourself back and say, “Lord, have mercy on me a sinner” (Luke 18:13).

  • Live one day at a time: Do not allow the worries of the future rob you of the joys of the present.

JUDE-MARY OWOH


 

Prayer:

  1. Spirit of God grant me the grace to go through today in union with You in Jesus name.

  2. Grant me good health of mind and body, in Jesus name.

  3. I know you have made provision for my needs. Enrich me so that I may assist others who are in need, in Jesus name.

  4. Renew your blessings in my life daily through Christ our Lord.

  5. O Lord heal our nation, in Jesus name. Amen.

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