Monday, May 14, 2012

“A friend may be waiting behind a stranger's face.”

“Prayer is nothing else than being on terms of friendship with God.” St. Teresa of Avila.

(Gospel Text: John 15:15)
 "I no longer call you slaves, because a slave does not know what his master is doing. I have called you friends, because I have told you everything I have heard from my Father."

“Me? You are really calling a guy like me your friend?”

In my mind, I always picture Jesus as a mentor, teacher, or leader. But friend? It just didn’t seem right to me. I think one of the main reasons why it was difficult for me to see Jesus as a friend was that it implied Jesus had somewhat equal status with me. We usually consider our friends to be our equals, and it seemed almost heretical to think that way.

However, as I reflected more about it, I realized that Jesus claiming us as friends goes to the heart of what we believe in our faith. We believe that Jesus in his great divinity and power, humbled himself and fully took on human flesh, thus becoming one of us in to order to grant us redemption. As Saint Athanasius wrote, “God became man so that man might become God.” Jesus did not choose to be separate from us or lord over us. Instead, Jesus fully embraced our humanity and dedicated his life to serving others. In addition, each time we receive the Eucharist we believe that we unite ourselves to Christ in a special, sacramental way. Therefore, by claiming us as friends, Jesus is reminding us that he wants to share in our lives in an intimate and powerful way.

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