Fourth Sunday of Lent
Second Book of Chronicles 36:14-16, 19-23, Psalm 137:1, 2, 3, 4-5, 6,
Letter of Saint Paul to the Ephesians 2:4-10, & John 3:14-21
According to a Jewish legend, when God was about to create man, He first gathered and consulted with the angels. “Create him not,” said the Angel of Justice, “For he will commit all kinds of wickedness against his fellow men, he will be bad and cruel and dishonest and unrighteous.” Then, the Angel of Truth said, “Create him not, for he will be false and deceitful to his brothers and sisters and even unto you.” The Angel of Holiness stepped forth and said, “Create him not for he will follow that which is impure in your sight and dishonor you to your face.” Then, the Angel of Mercy said, “Heavenly Father, create him, for he sins and turns from the path of truth and holiness, but I will take him tenderly by the hand and speak loving words to him and then lead him back to you.” God heeded the council of the Angel of Mercy and created man.
Clearly, this story illustrates our Lord’s words in today’s Gospel narrative, as well as one of the most quoted passages in the Holy Bible. “For God so love the world that He gave His only son so that everyone who believes in Him might not perish but might have eternal life.” This passage is an excellent reminder that God’s love is unconditional. By now, I hope that we have won over the Angels of Justice, Truth, and Holiness. Or, have we?
There are very few guarantees in our world. However, I am quite certain that God loves us and always will. Over the centuries, humanity has overcome countless wars, famines, plagues, natural disasters, dictatorships, genocide, and other numerous issues. Today, our world continues to face many obstacles. It is challenging to imagine how many of us are asking for God’s help. Those preoccupied with world events may believe God has no part in their lives. However, all of us need to hear the truth of Jesus Christ. Today’s Gospel ends with, “But whoever lives the truth comes to the light, so that His works may be clearly seen as done in God.”
Sister and brothers, our hearts are hardened, and our ears are closed. So often, we do not listen to these Words of the Lord. Even when we do listen to them, we often do not believe them. Today, on the Fourth Sunday of Lent, when we should rejoice, open our hearts, and listen to God. He only wants to tell us that He loves us and invites us to live a life of commitment to Him.
Question of the Day: Will you pray to the “Angel of Mercy” and ask for his guidance and protection as you express your love to God, our Father, in heaven?
Prayer: “I am the light of the world, says the Lord; whoever follows me will have the light of life.” (John 8:12)