Monday, March 6, 2017

Do you try to discover the “good news” in every Gospel passage you hear or read? - Daily Reflections March 6, 2017

Doesn’t “Gospel” mean “Good News”? Are we responding to every reading of the Gospel with “Praise to You, Lord Jesus Christ,” even after listening to today’s horrible picture about the Last Judgment? Yes, some are invited into eternal glory, but the divine Judge condemns the “goats” to eternal damnation. Is this good news?
       If only we would listen to the Gospel readings with the conviction that God is loving, merciful and compassionate, we will discover some good news even in frightening passages. We cannot help it that we are judged continuously by people around us. They judge us for our failures, for our laziness, for our stupidity, etc., whether real or imagined. And their judgment is often, if not most of the time, unfair. The media judge everything and everyone and find them guilty. Isn’t it good news that in the end, the only judgment that actually matters is presided over by a loving and merciful God?
       We will never appear innocent as lambs, perfect and all-holy before God. But our divine Judge knows how fragile and weak we human beings are. He does not focus on what we have done wrong to accuse and condemn us. No, He sees all our efforts, our struggles, our fallings and standing-ups. He knows how often we have approached Him in the sacrament of reconciliation and begged for mercy and forgiveness. He knows how many times He has entered our hearts in the Eucharist and so cleansed us. The good news, therefore, of the frightening Gospel we read today is this: Our last judgment will be done by the One who knows us better than all our acquaintances; He knows us better than we know ourselves.
       And I guess, nobody among us wants to disappoint our final Judge. Lent is a time to reflect on this. Fr. Rudy Horst, SVD
---------- REFLECTION QUESTION ----------
Do you try to discover the “good news” in every Gospel passage you hear or read?
Lord, thank You for being my last Judge. Into Your loving, merciful hands, I submit myself gladly — for I know You will not judge me according to worldly standards but by the standards of Your love. Amen.

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