Tuesday, April 28, 2015

"Faith is to believe what you do not see; the reward of this faith is to see what you believe."

“I can see thanks to the sun light, but if I close my eyes, I cannot see; but this is not the fault of the sun, but mine.” - St Thomas Aquinas (1225 – 1274: Dominican friar & Doctor of the Church)

Gospel Text: (JN 10:22-30)
The feast of the Dedication was taking place in Jerusalem.
It was winter.
And Jesus walked about in the temple area on the Portico of Solomon.
So the Jews gathered around him and said to him,
“How long are you going to keep us in suspense?
If you are the Christ, tell us plainly.”
Jesus answered them, “I told you and you do not believe.
The works I do in my Father’s name testify to me.
But you do not believe, because you are not among my sheep.
My sheep hear my voice;
I know them, and they follow me.
I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish.
No one can take them out of my hand.
My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all,
and no one can take them out of the Father’s hand.
The Father and I are one.”

Only through Faith is a person able to recognize Jesus Christ as the Son of God. When Pope Saint John Paul II addressed the young people on the occasion of the 15th World Youth Day in 2000, he spoke about the “school of faith”. To the question «Who do the crowds say that I am? » (Lk 9:18), the Holy Father said there are many answers... But then Jesus asks a more personal question: «But who do you say that I am? ». To be able to answer like St. Peter did —«You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God» (Mt 16:16) — it takes God's grace and more importantly, you have to have an open heart to receive that grace. If your heart is hard or full of pride God’s grace will never get in!

God wishes everybody to believe and be saved but only humble men and women are able to receive the gift of grace. «But with the humble is wisdom», can be read in the Book of Proverbs (11:2). Man's true wisdom consists of trusting God.

Jesus knows his sheep and his sheep hear his voice (Jn 10:27). Faith allows us to connect with Jesus through prayer. What else is a prayer but a way to communicate with Jesus Christ, who loves us and takes us to the Father? And the outcome and reward of this intimacy with Jesus in this life is eternal life, as we have read in the Gospel today.

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