Daily Gospel Reflection for May 19, 2014

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Today’s Gospel: John 14:21-26

How often do we hear that the Catholic Church is just a backward set of rules? Do you sometimes feel this way? The truth is that Jesus Christ answers this complaint in today’s Gospel reading. He tells the Disciples that, “Whoever loves me will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our dwelling with him.” Wow! Amazing words! If we love Him and follow His commandments He will dwell in us.

Love requires a lot from us. When I chose to marry my husband, I was choosing to abandon myself to become one flesh with him. That meant dying to self. Do I still struggle? Absolutely. It is the same with my daughter. She is slowly, but surely, ripping the selfishness right out of me. But, because I love them, I desire their good. I want what is best for them. The same thing, even more so, is true of God. Because He loves us infinitely, He desires what is good for us. He knows what is best for us and a lot of times it is not what we think.

Some Church teaching can be difficult to grasp, and obedience can be difficult, but the truth is that God gave us those commandments because they will make us a Saint. He is calling each one of us to sainthood, and in order to become a Saint, we must live His rules. Not because He is a tyrant, but because He wants to free us from those things that will weigh us down, or kill our souls.

So, the next time you hear someone complain about Church teaching, or you struggle yourself, remember that it is always for your own good. It is so that we can grow in love of God and He can dwell in us. God wants each one of us to be a Saint. He is showing us the way. A good way to better understand His Church is to buy a Catechism of the Catholic Church for your home. Slowly read through it and you will discover even more of God’s great love for you.

Ponder:

Do I accept God’s commandments and rules as a part of His love for me? Are there areas of my life where I need to be obedient? Do I truly know how much He loves me?

Pray:

Heavenly Father, thank you for your great love. Teach me to be obedient to your commandments as they have been handed down by the Church. Help me to become a Saint so that I may be united with you in Heaven. Help me to understand that all you ask of me is because of your immense love for me.

Copyright 2014 Constance Hull

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4 Comments

  1. Kelly Guest on

    You are right about the importance of the Catechism in understanding the why’s of the teaching of the Church. I have the privilege of teaching the Baptism classes in our parish. I give each couple the Catechism and encourage them to do just what you said. I think most people know what the Church teaches; they just don’t understand why.
    I, on the other hand, know and understand Church’s teaching. Now it is a matter of putting it into practice. The Holy Father’s words about gossiping has really got me reflecting, examining and trying to amend. This is an area of my life that I need to become more obedient.

  2. I love the ending of this gospel passage:

    I have told you this while I am with you.
    The Advocate, the Holy Spirit
    whom the Father will send in my name—
    he will teach you everything
    and remind you of all that I told you.

    We don’t have Christ with us to teach us personally, but we do have God’s advocate, the Spirit. Often that Spirit feels distant, but there are moments when I can tangibly feel the Spirit’s presence, teaching, directing, correcting… I am praying today to be more in tune to those promptings so that I may better follow the commandments and all of Christ’s teachings.

  3. I love the line, “slowly but surely ripping the selfishness right out of me”. So true, we need to be obedient and sometimes He has to force us, other times we begin to come along slowly. Lovely, thank you.

  4. It helps to think of Mother Church. My mom often made me do things I didn’t like that she knew were good for me, just as I now make my children do things they don’t like because I know it’s best for them. What if Jesus set up the Church to be the same way? Mother knows best… 🙂
    Thank you for this reflection!

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