Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Where do we belong?

10 Minute Daily Retreat - Read the Daily Gospel with a prayerful heart.
By Jane Borg (No.121)

A reading from the holy Gospel according to John John (17:11b-19)
'And now I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one, as we are one. While I was with them, I protected them in your name that you have given me. I guarded them, and not one of them was lost except the one destined to be lost, so that the scripture might be fulfilled. 
 But now I am coming to you, and I speak these things in the world so that they may have my joy made complete in themselves.  I have given them your word, and the world has hated them because they do not belong to the world, just as I do not belong to the world. I am not asking you to take them out of the world, but I ask you to protect them from the evil one.
They do not belong to the world, just as I do not belong to the world. Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth. As you have sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world. And for their sakes I sanctify myself, so that they also may be sanctified in truth.’

In this great prayer, Jesus prays for us to the Father: that he would sanctify us so that we can continue to be in this world but not of the world. Living this reality is a continual challenge for us, but it is our call as Christians.

As this world we live in becomes increasingly secularised and pagan, our challenge is to bring the light of Christ into this darkness. Not all are comfortable preaching on street corners. However we are all capable, with God’s grace, of living and witnessing asSt. Francis of Assisi exhorted – go preach the gospel and if necessary use words!

So how do we live within this dark society without being drawn into becoming a part of it? Jesus gives us the answer in this prayer. He asks the Father that we may

  • Be one – that we find community with God and with each other
  • Sanctify them – that we are made holy through God’s grace
  • Your name – that we know and call on the name of God, especially on the name of Jesus,
  • Your word – that is truth and that it will accomplish the will of God in us
  • Jesus himself - who the Father gave us to lead us to the Father.

So our way to living in the world is to commit ourselves to and rely totally on God. God has given us the roadmap to Heaven and instruction book for life – the Bible, supported by Tradition.

We have been taught to pray, invited into a personal relationship with Jesus and through Him with the Father and Holy Spirit. Finally, we have been given the church – Jesus’ body on earth – a community of believers to support us as we journey. This is all we need to face all that happens in our lives and to be a light to others living in darkness.

Let us not take these gifts for granted.

Jane Borg

5 minutes: READ the text slowly.
REFLECT on a phrase or word that struck you.
SPEAK to God about your thoughts.
5 minutes: LISTEN to God speak to you.
RESPOND with a prayer that feels right for you.

Next Reflection:  Malcolm Davies Wednesday, May 22nd, 2015