Sunday, March 15, 2015

Fourth Sunday of Lent: Engaged Heart

"But whoever lives the truth comes to the light, so that his works may be clearly seen as done in God." - JN 3:14-21

The season of Lent and Easter calls each of us to take part in the dying and rising of the Paschal mystery within our everyday lives. We are encouraged to cultivate and recapture meaning day in, day out by walking in the light and living in truth. Whether or not we follow and allow the light to shine through is a matter of choice. Today’s gospel invites us to seek every opportunity, encounter, situation, and activity as a continuous exercise of faith, hope, and charity. The challenge comes in doing it with love and Jesus by our side, allowing these experiences to penetrate our hearts, transform us, and set us free.

This reminds me of a scene from Evan Almighty where Morgan Freeman asks, “If someone prays for patience, you think God gives them patience? Or does He give them the opportunity to be patient? If he prayed for courage, does God give him courage, or does He give him opportunities to be courageous? If someone prayed for the family to be closer, do you think God zaps them with warm fuzzy feelings, or does He give them opportunities to love each other?” God gives us free will and the ability to choose. We are not forced into a relationship with Him. It is the consciousness we bring to bear on our lives which constructs meaning and how we choose to respond in any given situation.

By inviting Jesus into my daily life, I am able to lean on Him to observe a situation from His perspective, one that is more generous, reasonable, forgiving, loving, bighearted, and grateful. He encourages me to move towards the light, even if it is a hard direction to move. He reminds me to be gentle with myself when I make a mistake and how life is more meaningful when lived with integrity, compassion, and love. In my experience, those sorts of revelations help. They unclench the stronghold of one’s fears. They push intimacy to a more vulnerable place, leading us into a new and deeper life with our heart and mind engaged.

Lord, enfold me in the depths of Your heart.

Reflected by Tam Lontok

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