Acts 8:5-8,14-17; Ps 66 Let all the earth cry out to God with Joy; 1 peter 3:15-18; John 14:15-21
This weekend is Memorial Weekend. Flags are erected across our nation so that we might remember those who have fallen in service to our country especially in the Military. We recall to mind those who have died in that service. To die for our country is a great and noble sacrifice. To Live for our country is greater still.
We remember the fallen so that we do not forget how to live. We remember the fallen so we can keep the fight alive. We remember the fallen so that we might live differently, bold and brave each day anew.
What good is it to honor the fallen if we forget how to live today. What our country needs today more than ever are those who are willingly to live for it, seeking to steer it on a path that is truly honorable. What good is it to remember those who died for our country and yet stand idly by and watch it slowly disintegrate, especially its morality. To do this is make our remembering in vain and the lives of those who sacrificed their life in vain as well.
What do we do?
St Peter tells us to "sanctify Christ as lord in your hearts."
Perhaps this is a good starting point for us. Do we "sanctify" Christ as Lord in our hearts? Do we set apart our heart for him and him alone? Do we live under his authority and guidance? Have we developed a real and lasting relationship with Jesus and his Church through the abiding of his Holy Spirit? YOU may think why the church?
Well, look at the first reading it was through the church that the Samarians were gifted the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, by the laying on of hands of the Apostles. Later, this occurs through the bishops, the successors of the Apostles. This is important. To Love Jesus and to distance ourself fro his church is really delusional. The church and Jesus go hand in hand.
Does Christ have primacy in our life? Jesus desires personal relationship with us. He has chosen his part as he tells us in the gospel today, "I am in my Father, you are in me, and I in you." Jesus has chosen to be close and intimate with us and he awaits our choice.
As with any relationship, we choose how close we want to be with someone. That closeness is not determined by words alone but is experienced in action. What in our life points to the closeness we desire with Christ?
We say we love Christ but we distant ourselves from his church, could this be right?
We say we want relationship yet we make excuses for not praying or reading scripture or spending time with him. How do we create space and time for the one who has created space and time for us?
daily prayer time, going to mass, going to confession, reading the bible, discovering the teachings of the church, acting virtuously, choosing to suffer for doing good: all these ways we intensive intentionally our personal relationship with Jesus and give the Spirit and opportunity to enliven our life.