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Friday, April 23, 2021

Reflection 2021-04-24 Saturday Week 3 in Easter

Acts 9:31-42; Psalm 116; John 6:53, 60-69
The Gospel tells us Jesus said to the people Very truly, I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. Many of his disciples replied This teaching is difficult; who can accept it? These were disciples of Jesus who could not accept this teaching. Sad to say, this happens a lot to disciples of Jesus. They could not accept what Jesus teaches, so they either interpret it according to their fancy or like the disciples in the Gospel, walk away from Jesus.
When Jesus asked the Twelve Do you also wish to go? Simon Peter answered Lord, to whom can we go? You have the words of eternal life. We have come to believe and know that you are the Holy One of God. What Peter said reveals how we should respond to Jesus when we do not understand him: we remain in Jesus and trust him! Our faith is not based on a set of teaching. Neither is it based on rules and laws or rituals. Our faith is based on the Person of Jesus Christ.
In the First Reading, Peter shows what believing in the Person of Jesus means. When he found Aeneas, who had been bedridden for eight years, Peter told Aeneas Jesus Christ heals you; get up and make your bed. To believe in the Person of Jesus is to do things in his name. It is to have the mind of Jesus so that we desire what he desires, we respond how Jesus will respond. In the second miracle narrated in the First Reading, Peter did almost the same as what Jesus did to the young girl, as narrated in Mark 5:38-43. Jesus came to the house of Jairus and there was weeping and wailing. In the First Reading, the women were weeping and showing tunics Dorcas made. Mark tells us Jesus put the mourners out. In the Acts of the Apostles, Peter put all of them outside. Jesus spoke to the young girl Little girl, rise up. Peter told the woman Tabitha, get up.
The difference between Peter and Jesus is Jesus said Little girl, I say to you. While Peter prayed. Jesus spoke in his own authority. Peter recognized the authority of Jesus. Peter knew who he worshiped. Peter knew where the power to raise someone from the dead comes from: Jesus.
In our faith, we are not called to understand everything we are taught. There will be things that are difficult to understand and difficult to accept. But the question we need to answer is this: who is Jesus? If he is just a human being, then I can choose to ignore him. But if Jesus is God, I have no choice but obey. We are called to make a choice when we do not understand or accept what Jesus tells us: Obey or walk away.
Lord, I may not understand you and sometimes, I may not agree with you. May I always choose you over myself, my own ideas, because to whom should I go, you have the words of eternal life. I have come to believe and know that you are the Holy One of God.

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