MONDAY, THIRD WEEK OF EASTER (Saint Athanasius, Bishop & Doctor)
Acts 6:8-15; Ps 119:23-30; Mt 10:22-25/Jn 6: 22-29
JESUS ALONE IS ENOUGH
Today’s Gospel begins with a search. The people are eagerly searching for Jesus. They are guessing, calculating, predicting where he could be and how they could reach him. Without using a boat, Jesus had crossed the sea. In asking Jesus, “when did you come here?” the people are expressing a sense of wonder at the possibility of a miraculous crossing. They had just eaten the bread that was miraculously multiplied and now they seek another miracle. However, Jesus, who knows what is in everyone (cf. Jn 2:25), responds by pointing out their motivation. The people were searching for him only because they wanted to improve the circumstances of their physical life. But Jesus wants them to consider their spiritual lives too. He desires to invite them to change their motivation. In other words, he was saying to them, “You are not searching for me because you recognized your spiritual depravity, but only because you want free food.” We too often approach God with selfish motivations – to resolve a relationship, get a better job, succeed in an exam, sort out a financial crisis, to get out of a problematic situation in which feel stuck, etc.
Do we converse with God only when we need something? Do we seek God only in times of trouble? Jesus invites us to seek something far more powerful and essential – a relationship with him. This is what believing in him means. This relationship is the only food that can satisfy a much deeper hunger, a spiritual hunger. Even though we may be wrecked, sad and painfully in need at the physical level, we can be satisfied and secure at the spiritual level. In the first reading, we have Stephen, who when faced with false charges which he knew could result in his death, possessed not only an angelic innocence and calmness but also an awe-inspiring boldness. This is not something natural, but something that derives from a relationship deeply rooted in Christ that makes one realize that Jesus alone is enough!
Response: Blessed are those who walk in the law of the Lord
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