The good news for the day, May 30, 2017
Tuesday of the Seventh Week of Easter (298)
Looking above and beyond, Jesus prays: “Father—so Different—keep them in Your family—the one You have given me, so that they may be just as we are. While I was with them I shielded them as part of your family—what You gave me—I guarded them. None of them got lost except the one child who went lost (in order that the Scripture might be fulfilled). Now I am coming to You. I am talking about this in this world so that they may share my bliss completely. I have given them Your word—and the world has disdained them, because they do not belong to the world—no more than I belong to this world. I am not asking You to take them out of the world but that You keep them from anything wrong. They do not belong to this world any more than I am from it or belong to it. Make them different in truth. Your word IS the truth. As You have sent Me into this world, so I have been sending them out into it. I have made myself different for their sake—so that they may be sacred—different—in truth, too.” (John 17)
These words challenge you to consider what is “this world”—and what does the kingdom of heaven mean to you? Look—really look—at your world. It rains on the just and the unjust. It has cancer, murder, and war. You see, too, the vague, beautiful eyes of a newborn child, daily lush sunsets and sunrises, and the wonderful rhythm of the seasons. You see horror, loveliness, love, hatred, innocence and evil—you see it; you hear it. You do not deny!
This is God’s creation – all of it. Some things are thrilling; others, overwhelmingly bad. What do you make of it? How do you deal with it?
Jesus implies that your bliss may be complete in this world. That involves the acceptance of all its contradictions without being seduced by it, or overwhelmed by its evil. You say “yes” to it; you cherish all of it, but you never let yourself be so tempted that you join in its evil, its idolatry, or its tempting culture. You are different; that is the basic meaning of “holy.” Reflect on how you are part of the world but it does not own you. A child of God, you do not obey this world