Daily Reflection for Tuesday, April 14, 2020
Peace and Blessings Friends and Parishioners,
We encourage you to read today's scriptures at the following link:
If you prefer to use your own Bible, the references are:
First Reading: Acts 2:36-41
Responsorial: Psalm 33:4-5, 18-19, 20 and 22
Gospel: John 20:11-18
Our reflection on Tuesday’s readings:
It’s so easy to give in to problems and disappointments – the “NO’s” in our life. Things change quickly. What was beautiful isn’t like that any more. We give up. But in our impatience with our “NO,” we sometimes “give up” too easily. We miss the “YES” that makes up the rest of the story.
So it was with two of Jesus’ apostles. Mary of Magdala had brought them to the tomb where Jesus had been buried. But his body was no longer in the tomb. Had it been stolen? They didn’t understand. The pain and disappointment of one more “NO” was too much. The two apostles gave up and left Mary by herself at the tomb and returned home.
We don’t know how long Mary of Magdala stayed at the tomb. We know she wept. But even in the depth of pain, there can be hope. Often, the reason for hope is difficult to discern. We need a quiet mind and an open heart. Other-centeredness can bring hope.
Alone with her grief, Mary no doubt recalled her time with Jesus . . . she reflected . . . she prayed. She grieved, but she kept her heart and mind open . . . even to the miracle of new life. Suddenly, Jesus was there. According to today’s gospel, “Jesus said to her, ‘Mary!’ She turned and said to him in Hebrew, ‘Rabbouni,’ which means Teacher” (John 20:16). The trauma of “NO” had become the joy of “YES.”
A number of years ago, my wife Margot visited her cousin Becky who was dying. As young girls they’d been the best of friends. While they’d followed different paths, the joyful memories of those early years lingered – until the specter of death made its presence known. How could hope exist in the presence of such a devastating “NO”?
There was more than hope. In the course of their remembering and reflecting, it came out that Becky had never been baptized . . . and she wanted that very, very much. Because of her RCIA experience, Margot was able to baptize Becky just hours before she died. That which caused Becky’s early death couldn’t be helped. But through the power and the miracle of God’s love, the tears of Good Friday yielded to the alleluia of Easter. As it did 2,000 years ago, NO yielded to YES – for both Becky and Margot.
I continue to experience the pain of NO’s in my life. But I believe that every NO is accompanied by a potential YES to God’s plan for me. Discerning those YES’s and making them part of my life is the ultimate statement of my faith in God. How will I make doing that the focus of my Easter Season?
Peace, my friends,