USCCB Podcast of the Readings:
A reading from the Holy Gospel according to John.
Jesus answered the Jews:
“My Father is at work until now, so I am at work.”
For this reason they tried all the more to kill him,
because he not only broke the sabbath
but he also called God his own father, making himself equal to God.
Jesus answered and said to them,
“Amen, amen, I say to you, the Son cannot do anything on his own,
but only what he sees the Father doing;
for what he does, the Son will do also.
For the Father loves the Son
and shows him everything that he himself does,
and he will show him greater works than these,
so that you may be amazed.
For just as the Father raises the dead and gives life,
so also does the Son give life to whomever he wishes.
Nor does the Father judge anyone,
but he has given all judgment to the Son,
so that all may honor the Son just as they honor the Father.
Whoever does not honor the Son
does not honor the Father who sent him.
Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever hears my word
and believes in the one who sent me
has eternal life and will not come to condemnation,
but has passed from death to life.
Amen, amen, I say to you, the hour is coming and is now here
when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God,
and those who hear will live.
For just as the Father has life in himself,
so also he gave to the Son the possession of life in himself.
And he gave him power to exercise judgment,
because he is the Son of Man.
Do not be amazed at this,
because the hour is coming in which all who are in the tombs
will hear his voice and will come out,
those who have done good deeds
to the resurrection of life,
but those who have done wicked deeds
to the resurrection of condemnation.
“I cannot do anything on my own;
I judge as I hear, and my judgment is just,
because I do not seek my own will
but the will of the one who sent me.”
Good News Reflection: Has God ever let you down?
Is this you? “Sometimes it feels like God has let me down. Forgotten my needs. Forsaken me.”
Our feelings cannot be trusted to speak the truth to us. Today’s first reading assures us that God will never, never, (and again I say never!) stop caring about us and doing good for us. Mothers have strong, instinctive bonds with their children, but suppose a mother does forget her child? God has a much better memory. And you, dear one, are his very precious child!
Read Isaiah’s words personalized for you. This is your Father speaking directly to you about you:
“What are your prayer requests? In a time of favor (divinely perfect timing) I answer you. What failures and sins and mistakes have destroyed your life? I will restore your land (your life). What addictions or injustices are imprisoning you? I am saying to you: Come out! Why are you lingering in the darkness of evil? Come into my light and show yourself!
“Do you need rest and nourishment? Along the ways that I guide you, you shall find pastures where you will be refreshed. But only if you let me lead you and stop insisting that we try it your way.
“Blessed are you if you hunger or thirst, for you shall have your fill. Let me tell you about those hard times that are drying up your life: The scorching wind and the sun shall not strike you down. I feel sorry for you. Let me lead you and guide you beside springs of water, the powerfully healing waters of my Holy Spirit. I will cut a road through mountains and make the highways level so that you won’t become too weary on the road that you travel with me, and you will know which way to go.
“Sing out and rejoice, break forth into song! For I the Lord am comforting you! I show mercy to the afflicted!”
In today’s Gospel reading, look at the intimacy between the Father and the Son. Look at how one speaks for the other. Notice how Jesus, even while in human flesh, does nothing apart from his divine Father. Look at how the only thing that really matters to Jesus is doing the will of his Father. Look at how the Father supplies to Jesus everything that he needs.
Look again at Isaiah’s reading. You are just as important to the Father as Jesus is! He completely loves you, his adopted child, no less than his begotten Son! It’s impossible for him to love you or anyone incompletely.
How well do you know your Father? If you still think he has ever let you down, you don’t really know him. He is unlike any human father you’ve known; he is the Perfect Father.
Thank You, Jesus, because you are always caring for my needs, although sometimes I don’t believe this is true. I ask you for the grace of being always aware of your loving sight that’s fixed on me. Amen.
© 2018 by Terry A. Modica