Meditation for the Day

Wednesday, April 3

May We Always Embrace God’s Love and All That He Is Asking of Us, Truly Believing That God Is Always Faithful and Will Never Turn His Back on Us; He Will Never Forsake Us.

“Can a mother forget her infant, be without tenderness for the child of her womb? Even should she forget, I will never forget you.”

What a moving image of God and His Love for us! Our God will never forsake us! This would be amazing enough on its own, but let us remember who we are – frail, imperfect creatures; and, in our weakness, we are prone to offending God through sin.

But no matter how imperfect we may be, no matter how many times we may fall in our relationship with Him, God’s Love for us is unconditional. He loves us simply because He made us and has bound Himself to us – a perpetual remembrance because we are His children.

“The Lord is gracious and merciful…The Lord is good to all and compassionate toward all his works” – words which we read from today’s Responsorial Psalm. They, too, speak to us of the true nature of our God, a God who only desires that each of us be in relationship with Him – a relationship based upon righteousness, a relationship based upon love and personal sanctity.

In yesterday’s Gospel, Jesus showed compassion and gave healing to a paralytic who had been suffering from his infirmity for thirty-eight years. And our Lord did this on the Sabbath, teaching us and the people of His time that God’s Mercy and Compassion is not constrained by the Sabbath. And to do so in the name of God meant that Jesus was calling Himself “Lord of the Sabbath.”

Now, in today’s Gospel, which is a continuation of yesterday’s Reading, Jesus is showing Himself as being the obedient Son of the Eternal Father, making Himself equal to the Father – which only served to further infuriate and incite the Jewish authorities who were plotting against our Lord in order to execute Him.

And this scene now takes us back to our First Reading from the Book of the Prophet Isaiah, where God was echoing the words which the people were saying, “The LORD has forsaken me; my LORD has forgotten me.”

In reality, however, it was the Jewish people who had forgotten their Lord; it is they who had forgotten all the great wonders and mighty works God had shown them in the past.

Yet, God’s response to their words of lament were, “In a time of favor I answer you, on the day of salvation I help you…Along the way they shall find pasture…They shall not hunger or thirst…For he who pities them leads them and guides them…For the Lord comforts his people and shows mercy to his afflicted.”

Over the passage of time, the Jewish people had repeatedly fallen away from true devotion to the One True God, and gave themselves over to various practices of idolatry. They had turned their backs on the love relationship which God had asked of them. Instead, they took pleasure in sacrifices which were an abomination to their Creator.

And even though God’s Chosen People would become unfaithful to their God who brought them out of Egypt with awesome power and mighty deeds, Divine Love would always remain faithful to them –

“Can a mother forget her infant, be without tenderness for the child of her womb? Even should she forget, I will never forget you.”

And yet, in today’s Gospel Reading, it is those in authority who have turned away from God’s Love and Mercy and have misled God’s people; it is those in authority who continued to forget God and all the promises He had made to them in the past. It is through their own spiritual blindness that they were still unable to see the wondrous works of God working through this Jesus of Nazareth who stood before them.

The singular reoccurring theme that courses throughout the entire Bible – both Old and New Testaments – is God’s Merciful Love and His Infinite Compassion for His children. And sadly, the singular reoccurring response that we seem to read over and over again is rejection of His Love and Mercy, rejection of the Divine guidance which He gives them.

There is a famous Scriptural passage that we see posted on signs from time to time; it is “John 3:16.” It is a verse with which we should be very familiar – “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life” – a theme which is most appropriate for this time of Lent.

With all that is happening in the world today – wars, hunger, spousal and child abuse, sexual abuse, immoral conduct, abortion, euthanasia, violence of almost every form – some sadly and erroneously in the name of religion, and the list sorrowfully goes on and on – there are many in the world today who still reject God’s teachings, and, in doing so, they reject His Love and Mercy.

There are many in the world today who are unfortunately no different from those who had the great honor and privilege of seeing and listening to Jesus, Himself, as He walked this Earth, teaching us about who God is and what God is truly all about – compassion, love, mercy, a God who truly understands the weakness and frailty of our human nature.

Jesus speaks to us in today’s Gospel, “My Father is at work until now, so I am at work.” And He is continuing His work even today in each one of us as His disciples. It is up to you and me to live His Love in all that we do, not only in our actions but also in our thoughts and in all that we say, and in the prayers we offer to our Heavenly Father for the needs and spiritual salvation of others.

May our discipleship give witness to our relationship with Jesus Christ, and may this witness serve as a guide for others in their life of faith.

So that, as a people of God, we may always embrace God’s Love and all that He is asking of us, never turning our backs on the One True God who loves each of us beyond all human understanding – remembering and truly believing that God is always faithful and will never reject us; He will never forget us.

Looking into both our hearts and souls, our Lord invites each and every one of us to believe and follow Him.

As we gaze upon the face of the suffering Jesus on the Cross, how could we possibly say “no” to such Love? †

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Please Comment, Like and Share, and Suggest to your Facebook friends – to spread the message of God’s Merciful Love.

Por favor Comente, Le Gusta y Comparta, y Sugiera a tus amigos en Facebook – en difundir el mensaje del Misericordioso Amor de Dios.

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Scripture for the Day

  • “In a time of favor I answer you, on the day of salvation I help you…Along the way they shall find pasture…They shall not hunger or thirst…For he who pities them leads them and guides them…For the Lord comforts his people and shows mercy to his afflicted.” (Isaiah 49:8bc, 9c, 10ac, 13c)
  • “Can a mother forget her infant, be without tenderness for the child of her womb? Even should she forget, I will never forget you. See, upon the palms of my hands I have written your name.” (Isaiah 49:15-16a)
  • “The LORD is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in love. The LORD is good to all, compassionate to every creature.” (Psalm 145:8-9)
  • “The way of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD, but he loves the man who pursues righteousness.” (Proverbs 15:9)
  • “As a young man marries a virgin, your Builder shall marry you; And as a bridegroom rejoices in his bride so shall your God rejoice in you.” (Isaiah 62:5)
  • “For however many are the promises of God, their Yes is in [Jesus]; therefore, the Amen from us also goes through him to God for glory.” (2 Corinthians 1:20)
  • “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life.” (John 3:16)
  • “In this is love: not that we have loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as expiation for our sins…We love because he first loved us.” (1 John 4:10, 19)

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Prayer for the Day

“O Wound of Mercy, Heart of Jesus,

hide me in Your depths

as a drop of Your own Blood,

and do not let me out forever!

Lock me in Your depths,

and do You Yourself teach me to love You!

“Eternal Love,

do You Yourself form my soul

that it be made capable of returning Your Love.

O living Love, enable me to love You forever,

I yearn to eternally reciprocate Your Love.”

Saint Faustina (Diary, 1631)

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