Arulvakku

25.03.10 MARY SAID YES

Posted under Reflections on March 24th, 2010 by

In the sixth month, the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a town of Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man named Joseph, of the house of David, and the virgin's name was Mary… for nothing will be impossible for God." Mary said, "Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word." Then the angel departed from her. (LK 1, 26-38)

 

Mary has an experience. It is not a vision, nor a dream, nor an apparition. She has a personal experience of God. This experience makes her part of God’s plan. His plan is to bring salvation to the whole human race and to the whole of creation. Plan is global, universal-a master plan, but participation is personal.

God’s plan takes place within a time frame (in the sixth month), in a particular place (Nazareth) for a specific person (Mary). God does not work in the air, in ideas or just like that, His actions are time bound, very much localized and person oriented.

Mary’s response is also personal. (She could have said: I will consult Joseph …) Here, the response is totally personal. God’s gift of freedom is personal and the response also has to be personal. There is no collective freedom (there may be a group of individuals’ freedom which we may call a collective freedom) in responding to God’s plan of salvation and cooperation. God expects an individual response.

Mary’s response was in affirmation to God’s plan that has brought salvation to the whole of creation. As soon as the response is given then God takes over (The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you).

God’s plan is always for the whole of creation or His plan will have a global impact. But God acts through individuals who are bound by space and time. He expects a personal response to take over the individual as an instrument for His plan. The individual is free. Thanks to Mary for her fiat.

  

24.03.10 DISCIPLE…FREE…ABRAHAM…FATHER

Posted under Reflections on March 23rd, 2010 by
Jesus then said to those Jews who believed in him, “If you remain in my word, you will truly be my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” They answered him, “We are descendants of Abraham and have never been enslaved to anyone. How can you say, ‘You will become free’?” Jesus answered them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is a slave of sin. A slave does not remain in a household forever, but a son always remains. So if a son frees you, then you will truly be free… Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love me, for I came from God and am here; I did not come on my own, but he sent me. (Jn 8, 31-42)
Disciples…Free…Abraham…God
In today’s reading, Jesus is playing on  the above words.

To be a disciple one has to remain in Jesus’ words. In fact these words are addressed to the people who believed in Jesus. Believers, but do not remain in his words. Belief in a person necessarily means that one accepts his words and follows them. In John’s gospel the disciples are the followers of the word. Word is identified with the person.  Remember well: “In the beginning was the WORD and the WORD was with God and the WORD was God”  
Freedom is not gained through heredity. Freedom is a gift that an individual receives from God. Sure, Jesus is talking about spiritual freedom.  For Jesus freedom implies being away from sin. Sin enslaves. In John’s gospel, sin is not accepting Jesus as the son of God. That is, not believing that he is from above. Only Jesus will give freedom.
Abraham is a disciple and he is free. In human understanding they might be the descendants of Abraham. But in reality or in God’s way of looking at things they are not the descendants of Abraham. For, Abraham was different from them. (“But you are trying to kill me, because my word has no room among you.”)  
Those who accept God and believe in God as their Father will in turn love Jesus. Because Jesus was sent by the father and he speaks what he has heard from the Father.
So listening to Jesus (THE WORD) and believing in him (FREE from sin) are the true sons and daughters of ABRAHAM and they love Jesus because he is from the FATHER.
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