First Reading: Acts 14:19-28; Psalm: 145. R. v. 12a; Gospel: Jn 14:27-31a
GOD’S PRESENCE: THE PEACE WE ALL NEED
BY FR VALENTINE NNAMDI EGBUONU, MSP
Ordinarily, there are certain things that guarantee the safety and peace of the human person. They are basically life and economic security. Once the safety of life is guaranteed and our economic needs provided, we are to a great extent comfortable. The disciples of Jesus enjoyed these basic needs during their stay with Jesus. But as Jesus was departing from them, they discovered the most important need that guarantees safety and peace of mind. It was no longer those fleeting basic needs of life and economic security, but the presence of Jesus. They feared the vacuum that the absence of Jesus would create.
Jesus then gave them the assurance of his presence in his gift of peace to them. Jesus was saying that they should go beyond external realities and look within to see that he dwells within them. And that knowing and believing this would guarantee their peace, happiness and security even in the midst of the scarcity of the needs of the world. Jesus was not assuring them of a life free of scarcity, troubles and persecution. But of a life of inner serenity that his presence offers to those who believe in him. Knowing that God is within us and in control of every situation of our life is the greatest gift of peace.
The acquisition of the basic needs of life is a necessity. We all need it to survive and be comfortable. And this is why we all work hard to acquire them. But experience has shown that these things don’t really guarantee inner peace. There are many sad and distressed wealthy families just as there are many happy and fulfilled poor homes. There are many who still feel very empty and miserable despite meeting all their needs. One fact we cannot run away from is that the presence of God in our soul is something nothing earthly can fill; but something that can fill every earthly void. This is the peace we need: God’s presence that guarantees our inner serenity amidst the troubles and demands of life.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY
Lord Jesus, help us to realise that true peace is found in you. Amen.