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Engaging the Word: 03/15/2015

The world was made to be lived in and enjoyed.  It is meant to be an expression of the Creator’s love for creation.  In holding all that is in being, God is sharing everything into existence, loving us into life.  God wants us to enjoy each other’s company in this fascinating universe and through this gift prays for our gratitude and our love in return.  We are made for this — to love creation and the Creator, and frankly when we don’t, we wind up in misery and causing misery.  God does not force our hands, however, but leaves us free.  Human love is only possible with human freedom.  With freedom, though, we can choose not to love.  Sin, a term which comes for a word meaning to miss the mark or the target, is essentially a failure to love.

Despite our failure to love and the hurt we cause ourselves and others, as long as life endures God waits for our return, constantly sending word to us, inviting us back.  Even at rock bottom there is hope, and sometimes the prompting to pick ourselves up and return home comes from very unlikely sources.  Who would have expected that a Persian king would be the one to send the Jewish people back to Jerusalem to rebuild the Temple?

How can we tell if we are failing to love?  The truth is that we know it when we are failing to love.  The Psalm today points that out.  How can we sing when we are held captive?  When we are out of love, we can have no real joy.

We do not need to remain captives to sin.  God’s mercy and love are unlimited.  God not only has sent word to us, but God has sent the Word to us; the Reason for all that is came among us as one of us, as a human being to show us the way, the truth, and the life.  Jesus showed us that as human persons we can walk in the light and the truth; we can love one another and our God.

We are a bit more than halfway through our Lenten journey.  Let’s rejoice in God’s mercy and God’s coming among us to save us from sin and death.  In these remaining weeks before Easter let’s continue to focus on prayer (remembering that God is God), fasting (remembering that God has graced us with power over our choices), and almsgiving (remembering that our God-given gifts and talents are meant to produce fruit for the glory of God).



1st Reading: 2 Chronicles 36: 19-23 ~  Responsorial: Psalms 137: 1-6

2nd Reading: Ephesians 2: 4-10 ~  Gospel: John 3: 14-21


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