Jesus is Always Available

05-17-2020From the Pastor's DeskMsgr. Ellsworth R. Walden

When I was ordained a priest and even before, one of my possessions was a tool box that I used to work on my car and on my boat engine. One day when I was struggling and getting frustrated my father, whose job was being an auto mechanic, came out to help and said, "This is mechanical, we can fix this." His expertise and confidence was always a great help. When we want help or advice on how to fix something or how to use one of our electronic devices, we look for someone who can show us.

In today's Gospel (John 14;15-21), Jesus says: "Whoever has my commandments and observes them is the one who loves me." Jesus is doing far more than talking about the Ten Commandments. He is giving us His heartfelt, loving advice on how to live our lives. The words He speaks are meant to shed light on how He lived in our midst and how we can live in the very image in which God has created us—His Image. His commandments are challenging at times, especially in times of temptation, fear and confusion, but they are His words of love and wisdom on how to live a full, meaningful, fulfilled, and loving life. It is not just His words that we are given to help. They are but a summary of how He lived among us 2,000 years ago. Jesus Himself sums up all the commandments in these words: "You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and the first commandment. The second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. The whole law and the prophets depend on these two commandments."

Our greatest joy in life comes from loving and counting the cost or being concerned about how people responded to His love. He was never anxious about the response, but always full of hope. In his book "Interior Freedom" Jacques Philippe says: "A heart preoccupied by concerns and worries isn't available to other people." When Jesus walked the face of the earth He was always available to others and loved unconditionally. He is available to us and welcomes us with that unconditional love whenever we turn to Him in prayer or encounter Him in the Sacraments. It is His love for us and His presence to us that fills us with His Holy Spirit, the love and Holy Spirit we need to fix what is broken in our world because of the coronavirus. We listen to political leaders and pray for them. But the real answer lies in our trust in Jesus who is the Way, Truth, and Life. In our faith life with God and one another, we have the ultimate resource to guide and sustain through this crisis.

Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful and kindle in them the fire of your love. Send forth your Spirit and they shall be created. And You shall renew the face of the earth.

O, God, who by the light of the Holy Spirit, did instruct the hearts of the faithful, grant that by the same Holy Spirit we may be truly wise and ever enjoy His consolations, Through Christ Our Lord, Amen