Lord, help me to learn obedience and compassion through my suffering
5th Sunday of Lent (B) : 21st March 2021
Jer. 31:31-34; Ps. 50:3-4,12-13,14-15;
Heb. 5:7-9; Jn. 12:20-33 (Ps Wk I)
A covenant with God is not a set of rules, but a deep and enduring personal relationship. Jeremiah promised that God was going to renew the covenant, writing it in the hearts of the people. They would not forget or wander away.
We are offered the same personal covenant, but it must be nurtured and tended carefully. God is not distant unless we choose to make God so in our hearts. Jesus had to suffer and struggle just as we do. He knew fear, disappointment, pain, sorrow, and joy. He had to face his suffering and death with faith and courage. It was through this suffering that he learned obedience to God. Because he remained faithful through all this, he is our compassionate high priest. He understands us and empathises with us. We are never alone; we are never without a friend.
When the Greeks arrived and asked to see Jesus, he knew that the hour for his death had come. But he was not afraid. Just as a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies to bear fruit so, he had to let go of his life so that new life could come from all humanity. Our whole life is a process of dying to self and the past. When the day arrives for our physical death, we should be ready to embrace it with peace. Death and life are part of the same reality; our death is the gateway to a new and wondrous life. Yesterday is past; we look to the future.
Lord, may I learn obedience and compassion through my suffering.