November 2, 2016 (readings)
- Commemoration of All the Faithful Departed (All Souls Day)
John 6: 37-40
Everything that the Father gives me will come to me, and I will not reject anyone who comes to me, because I came down from heaven not to do my own will but the will of the one who sent me. And this is the will of the one who sent me, that I should not lose anything of what he gave me, but that I should raise it (on) the last day. For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in him may have eternal life, and I shall raise him (on) the last day."
Introductory Prayer: Lord, thank you for your unconditional love for me. You never give up on me, even though I have sometimes kept my distance in following your plan for me.
Petition: Help me to realize that I always need to approach you especially when I feel unworthy or uncertain.
1. Entrusted to Christ: God has chosen to use us as his instruments to help bring his salvation to others. He knows us perfectly and is well aware of all our frailties. At the same time he also knows the talents we were given to help us fulfill the task. That is why Jesus taught us to approach the Father with confidence. Sometimes we can mistakenly get the idea that Christ is our merciful intermediary who saves us from the fiery wrath of the Father of Justice. Yet we see here that the Father is paternally protective of us and in fact is the one who takes the initiative and sends us to Christ.
2. In good hands: The Marines pride themselves to the fact that they will leave no man behind on the battlefield; that they will surrender no man’s body into the hands of the enemy. God the Father gave Christ similar orders. When a Marine risks his life to rescue the dead corpse of his buddy, as edifying as it is, one is tempted to ask, “Is it really worth it?” Christ gave up his life to save our eternal life and gives us all the grace we need to keep our souls from the clutches of the devil. Could we not also ask, “Was it really worth it?” “Is my life really worth all that much to him?” Christ answers with a definitive “Yes! Absolutely!” We could confidently state that God is more interested in my salvation than I am? If so, what plans might he have for me?
3. On a mission: It is amazing that in his plan of salvation, God the Father would entrust his Son into the care of his creatures, Mary and Joseph; and equally astounding is the share of responsibility he entrusts to every Christian in the salvation of many souls. Just like a soldier, a Christian without a clear idea of his mission is ineffectual. Christ wishes to leave no man behind. This is clear not only by his death, but also by the extremes he went through in his life to save sinners. Am I aware of the many souls Christ has put in my hands? Have I already surrendered over some souls to the enemy because they seem hard to work with?
Conversation with Christ: Lord, help me to see the value of a single soul. Show me how to love the souls entrusted to me with a personal love. Thank you, Lord, for the gift of your love. If I had not discovered your love, I would have remained a slave of my own whims and desires. But knowing your love helps to put aside my self-centeredness and to love others.
Resolution: I will make a special sacrifice today for all the souls entrusted to me.
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