Thursday, February 23, 2012

Being Transformed in the Everyday

“If anyone wishes to come after me, he must deny himself
and take up his cross daily and follow me.
For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it,
but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it.” – Luke 9:23-24

Today’s Gospel reading stirs up challenging, even uncomfortable questions for me. Taking up my cross and losing my life for Jesus is a tall order. How can I live up to His words?

Yes, the invitation is radical; and the promise, significant – “life and prosperity” in God, as Moses reminds us in the first reading. Thankfully, Jesus keeps it simple. He invites us to take up our cross daily – that is, one day at a time, in the midst of where we are. How wonderful it is that we are already where we need to be, and can meet Him there! As we begin to enter into the mystery of Jesus’s life these 40 days, Jesus is just as much if not more so meeting us in the mystery of our own lives. It is the wisdom of a God who so lovingly and humbly embraces our confusion, struggles, boredoms, doubts, failures, to break new life into our everyday.

Second, Jesus reminds us losing our life for His sake means we will never have to go it alone. How often I’ve thought that I had to be the one to get my life in order, and figure it out myself, before I could get closer to God! If we lose our lives for His sake, we are entering into a communion - a two-way dialogue, journeying together, where Jesus takes the lead and brings forth the growth. The focus then becomes not our own efforts, but rather God’s transforming grace and love.

What’s left then? I’m just going to try my best to show up and get out of God’s way. That can’t be too bad, right?

Where am I invited to be present to God in my daily life this Lent? What grace can I ask for to help with this?

reflected by Quyen Ngo

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