How can I repay the Lord for His goodness to me?
By REV. FR. SAMUEL FREDERICK
Acts 9:31-42, Jn 6:60-69. Today's Psalms begins with the words: “How can I repay the Lord for his goodness to me?” This should be a question we must ask ourselves everyday. Yet, so many people do not ask that question. Instead, they often ask: “What has God done for me?” or “Why has God allowed this terrible thing to happen to me?” They fail to see that every good flows from God and God can make good come out of what seems like an apparent negative experience. As we reflect on today’s readings, we see signs of God’s goodness. Today's first reading shows us that out of the persecution of the early believers, the Church grew. Peter’s efforts to bring the faith to the wider world are reflected in the Acts of the Apostles, showing how he often had the power to work miracles. Peter spoke these healing words to Aeneas, a crippled and paralysed man: “Aeneas, Jesus Christ heals you.” It is not Peter who heals. All goodness, health and well-being come from Jesus. As a result of this healing, many turned to the Lord Jesus and experience eternal salvation.
We can have a kind of spiritual rebirth, like the woman in Lydda who was revived by Peter. Her name was Dorcas and her spirit of charity and compassion had endeared her to many, especially the widows and the needy. They felt her loss keenly and were delighted to have her back among them, alive and well. We are challenged to find practical ways of helping others, as Dorcas did, finding ways to help the poor, speaking out to combat injustice, listening with empathy to our neighbours in their pains and lending helping hands to those who are in dare need of our help. We are challenged to go beyond our comfort zone and attempt what seems impossible. Let us remember that “It is the spirit that gives life; the flesh cannot do so. In today's Gospel, Jesus further added: “The words I spoke to you are spirit and life.” When others began to move away from Jesus, unsure about what kind of way He was leading them, Peter made it clear that he would stay: “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.” If we decide to follow Peter’s example, we must trust that Jesus will continue to point the way to God. His words and His spirit can achieve what is beyond the power of human nature: “It is the spirit that gives life; the flesh cannot do so.”
May our Lord Jesus who underwent great sufferings to enter the Father’s glory, wipe away our tears and turn our sorrow into joy! Amen!! Good morning and happy weekend!!!