The most facile way out of a situation which humiliates you, which causes you much pain and, most of all, that makes you feel so alone in the tussle of life is to give up. The thought of giving up is the most easy way out, in order to start anew and a new chapter of life. Is it the best way however? No, it does not help at all.
We are all on a journey of faith and each one of us is being purified. God designs situations that will make us all grow in all aspects of life, taking each step with courage and hope. It even makes us realize that we need Him because without Him everything is lifeless, banished into nothing. The life of Jesus has taught us how we can stand with the realities of life and win over them with humility, grace of strength and in the name of love.
Holy Week which has just passed, has reminded us, once again, about the journey of the most intimate Passion of Jesus. This Passion tells us of the sufferings of Christ, between the night of the Last Supper and His death. The passionate event is of nothing else but great love. The love that gives life, the love that never sets aside a single soul, no matter how atrocious or extremely disturbing the acts committed. That love changes the darkness of our history into the light of the present and future. Every detail of Jesus’ journey during the last days of His life was full of intense and heartbreaking moments: with His disciples, with the apostles and with His beloved Mother Mary.
Strong Catholics observe the season of Lent with much piety and fervour until such time as the so-called “Way of the Cross ” comes into existence. This presents how Jesus takes each step for humanity. It also describes the last stage of the journey as unspeakably hard and painful. Evangelists have lingered, although with moderation, over the description of the Way of the Cross on which the Son of God and Son of Man walked out of love for the Father and for humanity. Each step of Jesus was one step closer to the accomplishment of the plan of salvation. (Cf.office for the Liturgical Celebrations of the Supreme Pontiff –The Way of the Cross)
On the Way of the Cross, Jesus fell many times. He was barefoot, thirsty, full of wounds as He carried the cross of the humanity, His physical strength wavering. So He fell. His body perhaps shook with pain and weakness. On His way to Calvary Jesus fell many times. Yet he always stood up again. He kept on going. He dragged the cross onwards. He stood up and carried it again. When He kept on going, He was thinking not of Himself. He was thinking about YOU, who is to live after everything. He thought about you, who will see and savour the great love of all time. He thought about you, in your most painful moments and in your joy. He thought about you, who will take up this life with love. He thought about you, who will face life without fear. When He kept on going, He thought about you, who will learn after His very own example. He thought about you, who will win and not lose life or hope. When He kept on going, He thought about you, who will take every vantage in your pilgrimage with the unwavering spirit of believing in Him. When He kept on going, He believed in you. He never thought of quitting after each fall, instead He stood up and kept on going because He thought about you. You were the reason why He stood after every fall, when He dragged that cross and carried it, despite its heaviness. Jesus owned the cross and made it up to the point of allowing Himself to be nailed upon it and shed His blood. You would never be able to fully figure out the word “to surrender” within His Heart because He thought of you.
In our own life, let us think about HIM, who kept on going then, and to this day, keeps on going. His thoughts have been of you even before you came into being. Consequently there is no reason at all why we should think of giving up when things do not go according to our plans or when we feel so devastated because of uncontrollable situations. Why these have occurred in our life lies alone in the wisdom of God. Simply know that there is a man, a God who stands ahead of us.
When Jesus keeps on going, He thinks about…
- You who will become priests that will shepherd the flock, who will evangelize the many through the Living Word proclaimed by you in word and deed, you as a priest that will accost every challenge of our faith and defend the truth of the doctrines and teachings of the Church.
- You who will be totally consecrated to Him, embracing life as a religious. Out of the poverty of your heart there will be much generosity in your YES and without fear you shall dedicate your whole life to the service of the neighbour and to God, in building up His Kingdom here on earth.
- You who will share the pulchritude of life as a married, who will confront and go up against the tests of time as a couple and as a family.
- You that will answer the call to stay single in order to offer your unmarried life fancy-free for Christ and for the Church.
- You who are called to different states of life, all for the one purpose that is to be a Holy Labourer in the Lord’s vineyard and, indeed, a Holy Worker for His Kingdom.
Always remember: when He keeps on going it is because of you.
Sr M Glenda Galanido, fdz
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