We Are The Easter People... Maybe

Jesus explained to the disciples that those who ate his body and drank his blood would live with Him for ever. I glimpse the honesty of the disciples in what they said. “When many of his disciples heard it, they said, ‘This teaching is difficult; who can accept it?’” (John 6:60).Jesus made it very clear that many people would find his teachings difficult and would reject them.
Following Jesus will not make me popular. Following Jesus will not make me successful. Following Jesus will  not bring me acceptance in the prevailing culture—whether that culture be the first century in Palestine or the twenty-first century wherever I may find myself.

If my faith is honest, if it is truly wrestling with the Word of God  then it will not be an “easy” word to celebrate, preach, teach, or sing.  
I believe the Gospel does bring joy and freedom, love and life, and very Good News-- but when I lose a sense of its difficulty and of its edge, I know I will fail in any attempt to convey that Gospel.
The disciples were right: “this teaching is difficult.” But by honestly admitting its difficulty and by attempting to live through the difficulties of Christ’s teaching, I come closest to His truth.

I know that when I find myself without strength and without resources of my own, I rely on His Body and Blood to sustain and to strengthen me.

May Jesus have mercy on me when I am glib.
May He save me from smugness.
May He strengthen me to live the truth with humility and with charity.

 Jesus reminds me of the Communion that matters more than any other—the union with Him, through His Body and Blood. "Those who eat my flesh and drink my blood have eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day."

For all Catholics this Easter let us remember we are the Easter people, even if some of us would prefer to stay hidden in that upper room : This is our story. This is our song...

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claire said...

Lovely post, Phil. Every bit of it.
I particularly like your prayer for smugness and glibness, and the mention of those of us who prefer to stay hidden in that upper room :-)))
Who has not hidden there at one time or another?

Philomena Ewing said...

Hi Claire,
Hope your Easter is a good one.Thanks for comments on this as I do find it difficult sometimes to rise to the challenge of declaring openly what I believe and I always run the risk of sounding smug and glib !! It is hard to deliver more nuanced messages and I struggle to avoid simplistic cliches. But sometimes the truth is simple and we can't face it !!