Do not harm yourself, we are all here

Do not harm yourself, we are all here


 Acts 16:22-34, Jn 16:5-11. Today’s first reading describes the trial of Paul and his companion Silas in Philippi, in the region of Macedonia in northern part of Greece. We can sympathise with Paul’s indignation at being wrongly thrown in prison, but may wonder if some more patience could have saved him a lot of trouble. Though such a flogging of a Roman citizen was against the law, so Paul later demanded and received a public apology from the magistrates. In the gaol during the night, as Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, an earthquake broke down the prison gates. While they could have escaped, they remained where they were. The gaoler woke up, saw his prison gates open and drew a sword to kill himself, afraid of the consequences. Paul calmed him down and after a quick instruction about Jesus, baptised the gaoler and his entire household.

Like Paul and Barnabas, the modern Christian often stands in need of spiritual help, from the Holy Spirit promised by Jesus in today’s Gospel. Crises like those met by Paul are not just a test of our personal character but can be the occasion to renew our trust in the love of God through the Holy Spirit. The love of Jesus surpasses our fears. He is no less able now than then to bring things to a happy outcome. Human judgements can be very wide of the mark. We need to keep seeking God’s perspective, to see others as God sees them, to judge as God judges. It is the Holy Spirit, the Advocate, who gives us God’s perspective. It is He who enables us to see as God sees, to know as God knows, to be wise as God is wise. That is why we need the Holy Spirit to keep filling the hearts of the faithful.

May the Lord grant us renew hearts and recreate in us His own Spirit! Amen!! Have a wonderful day!!!





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