Thursday May 16, 2024

Every relationship God has joined

Good News Reflections:
Making scripture meaningful to your daily life
by Terry Modica

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“Whatever God has joined is sacred. It’s sacred because it’s a reflection of who God is and how much he loves.”


Good News Reflection for:

Thursday of the 7th Week of Easter
May 16, 2024

Today’s Prayer:

Beloved Jesus, You prepare the hearts of those who don’t know You yet. May I take Your word to my neighbors in my daily walk, share the love you sowed in our hearts and all together rejoice as one body in You. Amen.

SaintsSubscribe to Today’s Saint Quote & Prayer:
gnm.org/SaintQuotes/

Today’s Readings:

Acts 22:30; 23:6-11
Ps 16:1-2a, 5, 7-11
John 17:20-26
bible.usccb.org/bible/readings/051624.cfm
USCCB Podcast of the Readings:
bible.usccb.org/podcasts/audio/daily-mass-reading-podcast-may-16-2024

The sacrament of love

[ Listen to the podcast of this reflection ]

The prayer of Jesus in today’s Gospel reading can be applied to any relationship: any two people, any community. Whatever God has joined is sacred. It’s sacred because it’s a reflection of who God is and how much he loves. This is why marriage is meant to be a sacrament instead of just a civil bond or the incomplete bond of living together like a marriage without the vows.

Lack of commitment and unhealed wounds in any divinely-inspired relationship give the world a sick and faulty image of Christ.

And so Jesus prays: “May they be one, Father. As you are in me and I in you, may they also be in us, so that the world may believe that you sent me.” Relationships that survive divisive troubles are a visual lesson about God’s unconditional love, which is faithful always, in better times and in the worst of times, in sickness and in health, whether we’re rich or poor, sinning or pure, all the time, no matter what.

In a Christian marriage, the husband lays down his life to serve his wife, and the wife lays down her life to serve her husband, and Jesus lays down his life for both of them. Marriage is a reflection of the Father’s only Son sacrificing his life for his Bride (which is us, i.e., the Church), and the Bride laying down her life (i.e., our lives) to serve Jesus.

The persistent love that spouses and friends and community members have for each other, which never quits no matter what, unites them to the fullness of God’s love. In God, they have the power and the way to overcome whatever threatens to divide them. (I’ve been married to Ralph since 1975; I have experienced the truth of this personally.) If both husband and wife desire to be partners with God in love, they bind themselves to the One who is totally and permanently committed to making it work, and no matter what problems arise, God provides the answers, the healing, and the growth that make the marriage stronger, even when one spouse does not work as hard at it as the other.

By having sacred relationships, we fulfill our calling — the vocation of the “common priesthood” that we all have — to bring Christ to the world. We spread the Good News by showing others that, with the help of God, love never ends and it’s available to all who want it.

What happens to the Sacrament of Marriage when one of the spouses refuses to live sacramentally? Or when one of them dies? Or when a divorced person realizes too late the mistakes and sins they have made? Jesus steps in and becomes their True Spouse. For the person who desires sacramental unity, he is the Sacrament.

In broken relationships, we should lift up the other person to God in prayer to supernaturally create opportunities for a change of spirit and heart.

Each God-ordained relationship is meant to be a gift of love to the world; we are called to be the presence of Christ for the world to see. How terribly wrong, how anti-evangelization it is to neglect or break this gift. May the prayer of Jesus heal our brokenness. Amen!

Reflect further on this issue with our Faith Booster: “Love cannot be obtained” @ https://wordbytes.org/faith-booster-minis/love-cannot-obtained/

© 2024 by Terry A. Modica


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