Follow the light

By: Fr. Jerry M. Orbos SVD - @inquirerdotnet - Columnist/Philippine Daily Inquirer | April 03,2022 - 08:00 AM

I remember a 60th wedding anniversary which I officiated some years ago. At the renewal of their vows, the husband, beaming with pride said with confidence: “Darling, I have loved you all these years,” to the delight of the congregation. The wife looked at him with a smile and simply said: “Darling, I have loved you twice as much all these years.”

In today’s Gospel (John 8, 1-11), we hear the story about the woman caught in adultery. The Pharisees were ready to pounce on her, armed with all their legal arguments to make sure that she is condemned, and trap Jesus also in the process. In that tense situation, Jesus simply said: “Let the one among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” Yes, truth need not be loud nor complicated. The power of truth is truth itself.

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“Speak your truth quietly and clearly.” (“Desiderata”) May we all learn to stick to the truth and stand by the truth, in these days when the truth can be easily faked, managed, and bent. Let God be God. Let truth be truth.

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It is difficult and painful to be condemned in public and to face accusations based on fabricated lies. It is called character assassination or judgment by publicity. Whatever. It is still assassination. Let us resolve not to become a part of the angry mob that takes pleasure in “throwing stones” at other people just because others are doing so. Before you feast on innocent people, please stop, look, and listen. And pray.

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“Neither do I condemn you.” How consoling to hear these words from the Lord! He is truly our refuge. God is good, loving, and merciful. Let us believe and keep on believing that God doesn’t give up on us. So, let us likewise not give up on ourselves, and on one another.

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“Go, and from now on do not sin anymore.” This is so very good, but just how do we avoid sin and live a clean life? How do we stay on the path of goodness and righteousness? Perhaps we can be helped by these 4Ps needed in our journey to God’s heart.

PRESENCE OF GOD. Let us live in the presence of God. Let us not hide from God especially when temptations come. Let us avoid the dim lights and the darkness of sin. Let us keep following the light.

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POWER OF GOD. Let us rely more on the power of God, and less on our own power and resources. Whenever we are tempted, let us earnestly pray: “Come Holy Spirit!” Let us not fool ourselves into thinking that we can make it on our own. When temptation comes knocking, just pray, and flee, immediately.

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PROVIDENCE OF GOD. Let us not worry and be filled with anxiety and insecurities that cause us to get worldly wealth and pleasures in whatever way. “God will provide!” “God will make a way!” Yes, let us remind ourselves that God is a God who never abandons us. God is enough.

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PROMISE OF GOD. Let us hold on to His promise that He is with us always. “So do not fear for I am with you” (Isaiah 41, 10); and that God has a good plan for us. “For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29, 11)

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As we prepare for the May elections, let us be vigilant of the “secret agents” of the evil one who plan to manipulate the result of the elections. We also pray to the Lord and to Mama Mary to prevent all forms of deceit, violence, and bloodshed. 

A moment with the Lord:Lord, help us to keep on following the light, and not to remain in the darkness. Amen.

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