Read this week's guidelines and be nourished as you journey with our Community in Cebu.
Be Givers of Eternal Life
April 22-28, 2019
To present that the person’s identity is the child of God and there he/she shares in the same Life of the Father. This identity is Eternal Life. In order to live Eternal Life here and now, the person needs to make a radical option to develop this Life fully by becoming transmitters of Eternal Life.
Objective for the week:
To be able to participate in Jesus’ mission having received this new life: in being givers of eternal life
Happy Easter! We are in this season of celebrating the joyous reality of our faith that Jesus has been raised by God from death to life. He is alive! Alleluia!
Many of us long to live forever. Some of our brothers and sisters are buying products to keep them young, healthy and beautiful. We never think that there is a beautiful and perfect place after our death, where we can enjoy our perfect life with God whom we long to see and live with for eternity.
God created us to enjoy and appreciate his love through his marvelous creations. He does not want us to live on earth forever for it has full of suffering and deceptions, but he wants us to discover the treasure within ourselves which is Eternal Life. To discover this treasure is to get the key through Jesus. Knowing Jesus more and more unveils the truth of eternal life. It is also a way of transforming and molding our characters to be like Christ in the way we think, do and say. It helps us live the fullness of life as we live by the virtues of goodness, mercy and compassion. It discovers the longings of our soul, that we never long to accumulate material possessions, but simplicity and contentment is enough to be happy and live on the Divine providence. It is where we become sensitive to the prompting of the Holy Spirit to reach out to our brothers and sisters who are confused about their lives, who lived in darkness and who are hungry and thirsty for the word of God. The eternal life has been buried by God deep within us and we can only cultivate it by means of knowing and imitating Jesus. It is the most precious gift that we have and it is our choice to make how and when to discover it. Once it is discovered, we are building the kingdom of heaven on earth and we are ready to return to our eternal place prepared by God for each one of us.
“It is not just a return to life, but entering into God’s very life.” (Cardinal Tagle)
Jesus makes us to be collaborators in his mission of giving eternal life.As Easter people, shouldn’t we carry and bring this Good News of our faith around us?
Bring others to drink the life-giving water
but those who drink the water that I will give them will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give them will become in them a spring which will provide them with life-giving water and give them eternal life.”
We need water as much as we need God. Water gives us energy to sustain life. But life does not only mean in the physical sense, but also in the spiritual. What creates meaning to our life amidst circumstances is the living word of God that waters our soul. It is in knowing and living in Christ that we can live eternally. If we constantly water our soul with God's words, our life produces good fruits of love, patience, understanding and all other virtues that give eternal life to others. The service that we offer to them without counting the cost or the time and the smile that we give to those who need our help are simple examples of the good fruits that give them eternal life.
How do I water my life everyday? Have I been giving living water to my brothers and sisters? How often do I give them water to drink?
Lead them to the Word of God
But Jesus answered, “The scripture says, ‘Human beings cannot live on bread alone, but need every word that God speaks.’”
The eating of bread is universal because this can be eaten by everyone regardless of age, race and religion. This is a call to everyone that we cannot live by bread alone. The bread that it refers are our comforts that we thought give us happiness and contentment. We do not live by the physical and material that we accumulate for these are all perishable. The real bread is Christ who only suffices our needs. With Christ, we can live simply, happy and contented to the meager resources that we have.
What kind of bread am I eating everyday? Am I willing to spare a piece of bread to others? What kind of bread do I spare for them?
Give the Word of Truth
By his own will he brought us into being through the word of truth, so that we should have first place among all his creatures.
Jesus' passion, death and resurrection are revelations of his fidelity to God so that the will of the Father shall be carried out and revealed that there is eternal life. But eternal life can not only be achieved after death, but it starts here and now. We too have our passion and death. To live eternal life, we must embrace them with love for it is in our weakness that God gives us the strength. Accepting our cross with humility is showing our fidelity to God. As Easter people, God has given us His Spirit without reserve and sent us to speak His own words of love and of truth. We are to speak His language, and not the earthly language of power , riches and the like if we want to give eternal life.
How do I look at my life? Do I consider it as an opportunity to impart eternal life?
Give life by loving
1 John 3:14
We know that we have left death and come over into life; we know it because we love others. Those who do not love are still under the power of death.
Jesus has already conquered the world through his death. So, we have also no reason that we cannot conquer sin by doing good. Resistance to temptation is eventually the grace of God from our prayer because prayer gives energy to the soul that capacitates us to love and to do good to others even to the most unlovable ones.
How is my life? Have I been renewed? How am I loving?
Spread the good news
Go and preach, ‘The Kingdom of heaven is near!’
Preaching does not only deal with spreading the good news but, it also deals with living what we preach. The disciples in their time were filled with the Holy Spirit as they listened to Jesus. Their hearts were overwhelmed with the teachings and the presence of Jesus. They were overjoyed and empowered to tell the good news to everyone hoping that others, too may receive the joy that they have received in Jesus.
We are invited to inherit the attitude of the early disciples to follow Jesus joyfully and faithfully and have the eagerness to announce what they knew and experience of Jesus.
How is my discipleship? Have I lived the teachings that I have preached? Have I followed Jesus faithfully?
Making the right choice
I am now giving you the choice between life and death, between God's blessing and God's curse, and I call heaven and earth to witness the choice you make. Choose life.
Eternal life is the most precious gift we receive but at the same time, it is also a choice we are tomake.God is inviting us to love the way He loves us. If we do not know God, we do not know how to love others. If you claim that you love God then show it. Our way of loving is the measure of how much we love our God. However, God does not pressure us to do so, but it is our choice to make the decision.
Do I prefer to live with my own desire just to make me happy? Is this the kind of life that I seek for the rest of my life? How should I know that I made the right decision, have I made someone happy or have I hurt them?
1st Reading: Acts 5:12-16
Resp Psalm: Ps 118:2-24
2nd Reading: Rev 1:9-19
Gospel: John 20:19-31