Reading 1: JER 20:10-13
Psalm: PS 18:2-3A, 3BC-4, 5-6, 7
Gospel: JN 10:31-42
Here we are in the Fifth Week of Lent. We are about to walk with Jesus to Jerusalem and to his death. I sit with today’s passage and ask myself, what prophets (influences) of the modern world am I allowing myself to feed and shape me? How am I responding to those influences?
We see today the prophet Jeremiah who has just challenged his community to turn away from the idols that they center their lives around. No different than how we tend to approach the Lenten season. However, the people of the community whisper: “Denounce! let us denounce him!” Do we respond this way when we realize through God, our own actions, or through others that we have suddenly failed to allow God to be the center of our lives? And worse, do we forget about His mercy that allows us back in those moments? Jeremiah, in his own persecution, holds steadfast for he knows “the LORD is with me, like a mighty champion.”
The Jews hearts have hardened and they have come to resent Jesus. His ways are different, new, and are stripping away all the Jews have built. If they bothered to understand, they could have benefited tenfold. Instead, their resentment draws them to want to kill a man whose ways challenge their own as if that is the solution.
Nelson Mandela states “Resentment is like drinking poison and hoping it will kill your enemies.” Jesus faces no less of a trial with the Jews who want to stone him. We can resent others so easily without stepping back and looking at the whole picture. But beyond what it is we may come to resent, do the works align with Gods?
“Even if you do not believe me, believe the works, so that you may realize and understand that the Father is in me and I am in the Father.”