- Acts 19:1-8; John 16:29-33
- Jesus’ Departure
Jesus said: “I have told you this so that you might have peace in me. In the world you will have trouble, but take courage, I have conquered the word.”
“I have conquered the world,” in other words, Jesus has already saved the world. Jesus Christ already saves us. Salvation has already begun in us. But how can we be sure that we are already saved? What are the signs? I believe that in my whole life we experience salvation already even if we are still here on earth if:
First, we love the sacraments so much especially the Eucharist and His word where we encounter Jesus Christ by receiving His body and blood and if we give more importance into this sacrament.
In the Basic Ecclesial Communities (BEC) level, we know how the faithful love the Eucharist so much. When they celebrate their fiesta and foundation anniversary, they begin it, as much as possible, with a Mass before any other activities.
One time, during a Sunday Mass I celebrated and during Communion, a blessed host fell into the ground when I gave it to a person receiving the blessed host. Instead of using his hands to get the blessed host, he got it through his tongue. That is, in my own reflection, how important and precious this body of Christ is that even for this person his hands is not worthy to hold it, but that is beyond superstition.
Second, we praise God even in little blessings that we receive from Him. Every letter of the word ‘PRAISE’ has its meaning. P stands for Primary. It is Primary because our number one priority in life is not our money or wealth but God Himself. R stands for Raise your voice. When we receive blessings, let us not hesitate to shout our gratitude to God. A stands for Affirming God’s will. This is our yes and commitment to do His will. I stands for Internalizing His teaching, that is putting into practice His teachings. S stands for Seeking Jesus always, that is, consulting Him especially during the time that we make big decisions in our lives. And E stands for Effort. We have to struggle in preaching Jesus’ words and deeds and not about our accomplishments but about Jesus who is the source of everything.
Lastly, we know how to forgive. It’s not easy to forgive but our nature is that of a forgiving son and daughter of God.
There is this Spanish story of a father and a son who had become estranged as reported by Bits & Pieces (October 15, 1992, pp. 13). The son ran away, and the father set off to find him. He searched for months to no avail. Finally, in a last desperate effort to find him, the father put an ad in a Madrid newspaper. The ad read: Dear Paco, meet me in front of this newspaper office at noon on Saturday. All is forgiven. I love you. Your Father. On Saturday 800 Pacos showed up, looking for forgiveness and love from their fathers.
How can we preach salvation to those who are suffering because of injustice and poverty?