Daily Reflection – Mar 12, 2016
Saturday 12 March 2016
First Reading: Jeremiah 11:18-20
Lord, my God, I take shelter in you
Psalm 7:2-3, 9-12
Gospel Reading: John 7:40-52
Today’s Note: Saturday of the Fourth Week of Lent
Some in the crowd who heard these words of Jesus said,
“This is truly the Prophet.”
Others said, “This is the Christ.”
But others said, “The Christ will not come from Galilee, will he?
Does not Scripture say that the Christ will be of David’s family
and come from Bethlehem, the village where David lived?”
So a division occurred in the crowd because of him.
Some of them even wanted to arrest him,
but no one laid hands on him.
So the guards went to the chief priests and Pharisees,
who asked them, “Why did you not bring him?”
The guards answered, “Never before has anyone spoken like this man.”
So the Pharisees answered them, “Have you also been deceived?
Have any of the authorities or the Pharisees believed in him?
But this crowd, which does not know the law, is accursed.”
Nicodemus, one of their members who had come to him earlier, said to them,
“Does our law condemn a man before it first hears him
and finds out what he is doing?”
They answered and said to him,
“You are not from Galilee also, are you?
Look and see that no prophet arises from Galilee.”
Then each went to his own house.
“Our Law does not judge people without first giving them a hearing…”
says Nicodemus, instructing the Sanhedrin. As we come closer to the execution of Jesus, the liturgy grows more intense, heightening the story of Jesus’ persecution. When Jesus goes alone to pray during this time he may have used cursing psalms to express his fear, his outrage, and finally, his willingness to turn over a normal human thirst for vengeance to God. Jews were passionate people, so Jesus would undoubtedly have used these psalms to lay out his battered heart before the one who could soothe him and break the schemes of Jesus’ enemies.
Are there old hurts in your life or new sufferings inflicted on you by others that you would lay out before God? You can say anything to God. The psalmists certainly did. Jesus, feeling every human emotion, was not ashamed to share with God his rage and his hatred. To feel hate is not to sin. To act out of hatred may well be. Putting our feelings out in the open, with Jesus and before God, is to let God know our inmost hearts. That is friendship. That is intimacy with God. God will not judge without giving you a hearing!
Father, forgive them for they know not what they do, those who shoot to kill, abuse their families, withhold food and medicine from the poor. We pray for those who persecute your little ones.