One good way to read the Bible is to put your first name each time God or Jesus is saying “you”. Try this as you read aloud today’s Gospel taken from John 14:15-21. Jesus said, “If you, (insert your name), love me, you, (insert your name), will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you, (your name here), another Advocate to be with you, (your name), forever. This is the Spirit of truth… you, (insert your name), know him, because he abides with you, (your name), and he will be with you, (your name)”.
“I will not leave you, (your name), orphaned; I am coming to you, (your name). In a little while, the world will no longer see me, but you, (your name), will see me, because I live, you, (your name), also will live. [another translation for this verse: “but you will see that I live and you also will live”] [another translation: “but you are going to see me because I am alive and you are about to come alive”]. On that day, you, (your name), will know that I am in my father and you, (your name), in me and I in you, (your name). [another translation of this verse 20 says “On that day, you will realize that I am in my Father and you are in me and I in you”].”
“The one (your name) who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love them (you and the community of the Church) and reveal myself to them (you and the Church).”
Now read this passage aloud several times, putting your name, each time there is the word “you”. You will understand that Jesus was saying these words not only for the twelve apostles but also for those who would believe, and believing, they may have life (see John 21:31). In fact, Jesus is saying these words to you, personally, right now, as you read the Pastor’s Corner. And the Spirit of truth is helping you to discover the impact of these words in your very life.
In this life, we often feel orphaned. Even before our parents die. We feel that we don’t belong! We are moving from country to country, from city to city, seeking a job or a better life. We are constantly uprooted. And even if we would remain in the same place, we still feel uprooted because everything keeps changing so fast in our personal lives, in our family, in our parish, and city, in our job. But Jesus said to me and to you, “I will not leave you orphaned; I am coming to you. You will see me, because I live, you also will live. On that day, you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you.” That day will come or maybe has already come in your life. It’s not happening only after death, in heaven, and you will know in your bones, that “I and the Father love you”. You will know that by practicing daily the commandments: loving others as Jesus has loved them. This (to love) is the way to know the truth and to live as He lives. Ask the Lord to help you live and love as He lives and loves. Ask the Lord, “Jesus, Abba, reveal yourself to me, now!”.
God bless you,