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WE WILL FOLLOW YOU

Father Francis's picture
Fifth Week of Easter

Acts. 16:1-10 & Jn.15:18-21

Saint Paul had drawn up his itinerary. But there had to be changes “when they reached the frontier of Mysia they thought to cross it into Bithynia, but as the Spirit of Jesus would not allow them, they went through Mysia and came to Troas.” Obviously the Holy Spirit had other plans!

It was revealed to Paul one night in a vision, “Come across to Macedonia and help us.” He wasted no time for he was convinced that God had called him to bring the Good News to the people of Macedonia. Paul could claim that he was truly guided by the Holy Spirit.

You and I know that Jesus is the Son of God made man. Yet how incredible it is that Jesus should have said “the world hated Me first” of Himself! Christ came to save all those who live in the world from sin and lead them to Heaven and yet the world hated Him! As the story of Christ in the Gospel progresses, the forces of antagonism get worse: the dangers increase with the turning of every page. This was a real burden for Christ, the burden of a parent whose children turn against him. If we side with Christ then we, too, will feel that burden, for as Jesus said “the world hated Me first” - we will be hated even by those who should love us and certainly by those who will not believe in Him.

Christ courageously and lovingly accepted that burden. In the Garden of Gethsemane He asked His Father for an easier way. It is the same in our lives. We often face problems, even when we want to do good. There comes a moment in life when we must accept our limitations and the limitations imposed on us by others. This has to be a memorable moment in our life - the moment we accept our Cross, like Christ did. That acceptance is not easy but, at the same time, it fills our hearts with a deep peace and sometimes, perhaps, even joy. Once we accept our Cross, we will experience a new courage.

Love always looks for solutions. Jesus never stopped searching for ways to win the world. We must do the best we can to evangelize, even though we may encounter opposition. With Christ's help, no obstacle is too great. He will help us to overcome all the problems we may encounter. The important thing is that we keep focused on the fulfilment of His will out of love. He will take care of the rest.

Lord Jesus, may we never slow down or quit following You, despite the hardships we might face. Give us the strength to carry all our crosses just as You were given strength from Your Father to carry Yours.

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