Liturgical Colour : White
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day, the day after the Solemnity of the Epiphany, we are once again reminded of the presence of God in our midst as how He has revealed Himself before us, as the Light of salvation and as a new Hope for us all mankind because through Him, we have received the assurance of eternal life and glory with God if we remain faithful to Him.
In our Gospel passage today, we heard of how the Lord Jesus went through the ministry that has been entrusted to Him, as He ministered to the people with illnesses and troubles, both the physical difficulties of the body and the troubles of the hearts and the minds. The Lord also cast out demons and evil spirits from the many people who were possessed, doing what seemed impossible before everyone so that they might see His truth.
The Lord showed the way of His truth, and all who follow Him are following the path of truth. And as we heard from our first reading today from the Epistle of St. John, the true path lies in the Lord alone, from Whom we have been guided away from the enemy, the devil and the false leaders out there trying to pull us away from the path towards God’s salvation. It is a reminder that there are those out there trying to mislead us into false paths away from God.
This is why St. John reminded the faithful that all of us must be cautious and test the inspirations of the spirits to make sure that they truly came from God and not from those wicked spirits and forces who tried to mislead us into destruction. But as long as we anchor ourselves on God and His truth, we will not fall into those temptations, and we will be strong despite the challenges and trials, the pressures and desire to follow a path that leads us away from God.
Brothers and sisters in Christ, in our world today there are just so many distractions present that caused many of us to turn away from the Lord and from His loving gaze. We embrace instead the devil and all those who worked against us for our annihilation, as they plotted against us and seeking to distort the truth by putting lies and temptations in our path, that many would be deceived and turned against God.
That is why as St. John has mentioned to us, we must be ready and be vigilant against the attacks of the evil one, who has relentlessly struck against us trying to prevent us from receiving and accepting God’s offer of mercy, forgiveness and healing which He had offered us through Christ, His Son. Certainly we do not want these plots against us to succeed, and that is why we are reminded today of these things arrayed against us.
How do we then resist the attacks and the temptations of evil? This is where we need to deepen our relationship with God, seeking Him and depending on Him to be our source of strength and our anchor in life. If we are alone and separated from God, we are weak and we will be truly vulnerable to the attacks of the devil and his allies. This is why he has always been so persistent in trying to distract us and to prevent us from being reconciled with God, as so long as we are separate from Him, the devil has a chance with us.
Instead, brothers and sisters in Christ, let us all do our best to reconnect with God, to find Him just as we heard in our Gospel passage today, those countless people who came to seek the Lord to be healed from their sickness and maladies, those who wanted help and to be consoled, to be reconciled with God through His Son, Who cared for them and showed the love of God tenderly through all that He had done before them.
Are we able to seek the Lord with a new spirit of love and desire to be reunited with God? Are we able to make the sacrifices and put the effort necessary for us to oppose the wicked works of the devil and reject his many lies, and instead put our complete trust in God and His promise in loving us and in forgiving us our sins and shortcomings? Let us ponder on these for a moment, and think how in our lives beginning today, if we have not done so, to be once again faithful to God in all things.
May the Lord our loving God and Father continue to love us and bless us, and may He continue to guide us in our journey of faith and life, that we may eventually find our way to Him, and be reunited completely with Him and be worthy to receive the fullness of His glorious inheritance and love for us. Amen.