2 April, Thursday – To Eternity and Beyond

2 April 2020

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Genesis 17:3-9

Abram bowed to the ground and God said this to him, ‘Here now is my covenant with you: you shall become the father of a multitude of nations. You shall no longer be called Abram; your name shall be Abraham, for I make you father of a multitude of nations. I will make you most fruitful. I will make you into nations, and your issue shall be kings. I will establish my Covenant between myself and you, and your descendants after you, generation after generation, a Covenant in perpetuity, to be your God and the God of your descendants after you. I will give to you and to your descendants after you the land you are living in, the whole land of Canaan, to own in perpetuity, and I will be your God.’

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John 8:51-59

Jesus said to the Jews:
‘I tell you most solemnly,
whoever keeps my word
will never see death.’
The Jews said, ‘Now we know for certain that you are possessed. Abraham is dead, and the prophets are dead, and yet you say, “Whoever keeps my word will never know the taste of death.” Are you greater than our father Abraham, who is dead? The prophets are dead too. Who are you claiming to be?’ Jesus answered:
‘If I were to seek my own glory
that would be no glory at all;
my glory is conferred by the Father,
by the one of whom you say, “He is our God”
although you do not know him.
But I know him,
and if I were to say: I do not know him,
I should be a liar, as you are liars yourselves.
But I do know him, and I faithfully keep his word.
Your father Abraham rejoiced
to think that he would see my Day;
he saw it and was glad.’
The Jews then said, ‘You are not fifty yet, and you have seen Abraham!’ Jesus replied:
‘I tell you most solemnly,
before Abraham ever was,
I Am.’
At this they picked up stones to throw at him; but Jesus hid himself and left the Temple.

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…I tell you most solemnly, whoever keeps my word will never see death…

Every day, the death toll and persons under monitoring and investigation continue to rise because of COVID-19. If a non-believer would read the verse, “I tell you most solemnly, whoever keeps my word will never see death,” that person would probably curse infinitely. Even believers’ hearts may falter because of what is happening in the world. Those with colds, cough, sore throat, body ache, fever, pneumonia, difficulty in breathing, and other pains are suspected of having COVID-19. Indeed, many have recovered but many have died. By the looks of them in social media, they are really suffering.  Even medical personnel are dying because they have acquired the virus. For us as believers, let us ask ourselves, “With our current situation, how are we supposed to reach out to others and tell them to keep the word of God and they will never see death.” Some people would treat this as a literal death.  They do not have the sense of ‘spiritual death’. Especially this time when everyone is panicking and a lot of people are dying each day.

There is much speculation about this current pandemic. No matter how convincing those sound, we must pray to God to keep our faith stronger.

Most of us are in quarantine and even though we are inside our house, we can reach out to others. We can show them that as Catholics, we are not hypocrites. There will be many bashers, but it is worth it.  As an individual with the resources and a strong immune system, you can look for areas near your place to donate food and other basic necessities. If you know someone who plans to do that, you can help in any way you can, even just as re-packers of the goods. If you cannot go out and you have resources, you can help financially. There are a lot of legitimate organisations who help people in need, especially during this time. We can also help in promoting good vibes in social media by liking and sharing positive memes and posts.

In times like this, let us remember the Passion of Christ. Our Lord Jesus Christ shoulders all our sins and saved us. He died, was buried, and resurrected. We must continue to have faith that after death awaits the eternal life. We must hold on that we will see the light after our sufferings. This too shall pass and through Jesus Christ, we will overcome this pandemic.

(Today’s Oxygen by Beryl Baterina)

Prayer: Father God, I am deeply sorry for all my shortcomings. Please help our sick brethren, especially those who are suffering with COVID-19. We beg you to give us good health always. Amen.

Thanksgiving: Father God, thank You for all the blessings that we receive despite the current pandemic. Thank you for all the people who are doing their best to control the spread of COVID-19. Amen.

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