Liturgical Colour : White
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today as we listened to the words of the Scriptures, all of us are reminded of God’s great providence and love to all of us, His beloved people. He has sent His Son into this world, Our Risen Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, to be the One to redeem all of us from our fallen state of sin, and to raise us up with Him into a new life and existence, filled with grace and blessings of God. Each and every one of us have been called by God to follow Him and to commit ourselves to His path, entrusting ourselves and our lives to Him. We should also allow His Spirit to come to us and transform our lives, changing our outlook and way of life for the better, to be more in alignment with the Lord and His commandments and Law, to do what He has taught and commanded all of us to do in our own lives.
In our first reading today, we heard from the Acts of the Apostles of the time after St. Peter and St. John had been released from the custody and questioning by the Sanhedrin, the Jewish High Council, which sought to restrain and prevent them from preaching or teaching anything in the Name of the Lord Jesus. But despite the threats, pressures and coercions, none of those could deter the Apostles from teaching the people and delivering to them the truth of God. This is the same spirit and encouragement that they shared with the other disciples of the Lord, and we heard how they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, praying fervently together to God with one voice, seeking His guidance, providence and protection against the forces of the evil ones and those who persecuted them. They asked the Lord to remember all of those who have been faithful to Him, so that they will be guarded against those with malicious and evil intent on them.
The Apostles and the disciples through their prayers reminded us all of the love that God has always shown His people throughout time and history, how He has always stood by those who were faithful and committed to Him. The Lord remembered His faithful ones despite the constant trials and challenges that they have always faced, reaching out to them and providing for them throughout their journey, and He did not let them to falter and fail. The very fact that His Church and works had endured all these while despite efforts and concerted attempts by many throughout history to destroy the Church and to prevent the success of the works of the Lord, in the end, the Church still prevailed and endured the past two millennia even when governments, regimes, kingdoms and peoples rose and fall, and even as many of those who oppressed the Church faltered and failed, and some of them still even became disciples of the Lord and believers themselves.
That is why, as we listened to our Gospel passage today, we are reminded yet again by the Lord Himself that each and every one of us must allow ourselves to be guided by Him and by the Spirit of God, the Spirit of Wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of courage and counsel, as we continue living our lives in this world. Unless we allow ourselves to be guided by the Lord and His counsel, we may end up failing miserably and terribly, as we cannot solely just depend on worldly things to get us to what we want and desire to happen, and in doing the will of God. Instead, we have to spend a lot of our time and effort in discerning what God wants us to do with our lives, through everything that He has provided and given to us, the many gifts, graces and blessings that He has bestowed upon us. The Lord has granted us the opportunities and the abilities to do what we can to proclaim Him, His truth, love and compassion to everyone.
That is what our mission is as Christians, as the members of God’s Church. Each and every one of us in truth share the responsibility and mission to go forth and proclaim the Gospels and the Good News of God, and it is not just the responsibility and the duty of the ordained ministers, the priests and all the others to do the will of God. In fact, each and every one of us, the members of the laity, are integral and important parts of the Church, without which the Church cannot truly function and do what it has been called to do. The ordained ministers cannot do the works of the Lord without support from the laity, and vice versa. But what is important is that we ought to know that each one of us have been given unique and powerful gifts, graces and opportunities to do what the Lord wants us to do. However, more often than not we are ignorant of this and we do not realise what each one of us are supposed to do as part of our ministry as Christians.
Brothers and sisters in Christ, now as we are reminded of this need for us to follow the Lord and to entrust ourselves to His guidance and help, let us all therefore discern carefully so that in our daily living, each and every one of us may spend the precious time and energy to do what is right and just, appropriate and worthy for all of us as Christians. Each and every one of us are the parts of the same Body of Christ, the Church of God, and every one of us should have the unity of purpose and work, and we should really do our best to be exemplary and worthy in all things, and not to be just faithful merely in name only. Unless we do our part and strive to follow the Lord wholeheartedly, how can we then be faithful and dedicated disciples of the Lord, in everything that we have done and in our every actions and interactions with others all around us?
Let us all truly be inspirational and good role models for our fellow Christian brothers and sisters, and even also for many others who witness our works and interact with us. Let our path and actions be guided by the Holy Spirit and by the Wisdom of God, as we open ourselves wholly to the Lord, allowing Him to lead and guide us down the right path. Let us all strengthen our devotion and commitment to glorify the Lord in each and every moments presented to us, and let us help one another in our journey of faith, particularly during this blessed time and season of Easter, when we should remind ourselves of our true Easter joy in seeing and receiving the fullness of God’s grace and love through the Passion, death and Resurrection of His only begotten Son, Our Risen Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, our Light, Hope and Source of inspiration and strength.
May the Risen Lord, Our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, continue to be with us and help us in our journey of faith, so that we may continue to be strong and courageous in our ministry in the Church, in whatever it is that we have been called into, in our perseverance in living our faith with zeal and in loving one another with genuine love and compassion. Let us all be the shining beacons of the Resurrected Christ and His Light, that many more people may come to believe in Him and His salvation through us and our exemplary living. May the Risen Lord bless us always, and may He bless our Easter season and celebrations, bless our loved ones always. Amen.