THEME: “‘I ABIDE IN YOU AND YOU IN ME’- ‘KEEP MY COMMANDMENTS IF YOU LOVE ME’ ”
(Acts 8:5-8, 14-17; 1 Peter 3:15-18; John 14:15-21)
Today is the 6th Sunday of Easter, as the Church gradually prepares us for the celebration of Pentecost. And with the ascension of Jesus in view, He assures his disciples and all humanity that he will never leave his people without any hope.
The first reading recounts how the apostles brought healing and joy to those who were possessed, paralysed and crippled in Samaria through the Holy Spirit.
The second reading (1 Pet 3:15-18) urges us the faithful to always be ready to give an explanation to anyone for the hope they bear. Peter added that, it should be done with gentleness, reverence and a clear conscience.
In the Gospel, Jesus charged us to love him by keeping his commandments. He also assures us that he wouldn’t leave us orphans.
Christians are challenged to love as Jesus loved. The love of Jesus is an active love. His love is responsive to our needs. He does not leave us as orphans. He promises another advocate. The promise of another advocate was made out of love. The Holy Spirit is the fruit of love, and acts internally within each one of us. The Holy Spirit lives and breathes within our souls. The Holy Spirit vivifies us and animates us. He gives us a sharing in God’s life, which is love. He is beside us to defend us when we are depressed. When we are depressed by the happenings in the world and the things we go through because of our faith, the Holy Spirit stands by our side, because he is our Advocate, our Counsel in order that we might defend ourselves. We see the Holy Spirit in our actions and in the actions of others. And the greatest demonstration of the presence of the Holy Spirit is love.
We are challenged by the consciousness of the presence of God to live like the children of God. We are called upon to abide by the commandments of God as a demonstration of our love for him and an appreciation of his abiding presence. Awareness and appreciation of the presence of God can engender great works.
Dear friends in Christ, let us in our actions always the conscious of the fact that we the image of God in us. Our attitude shouldn’t be a contradiction of the fruit of the Holy Spirit which is love. For Christ abides in you and you in him. Don’t forget; defend your faith with gentleness and clear conscience.
May the Holy Spirit be our strength now and forever.