Reflections - May 1, 2016

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you.  Not as the world gives do I give it to you……If you loved me, you would rejoice that I am going to the Father….Jn. 14:27-28.
 
In this Sunday’s Gospel Jesus offers us a sign of His presence, “His peace”.  Jesus tells His disciples, “Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid”.  Jesus’ departure should not cause fear, but should cause Christian joy because evil has no power over Him.  “Take courage, I have conquered the world”.  Jn. 16:33.  Jesus culminates His “exodus” from this world passing through His redeeming Cross, being obedient to the divine plan of love for humanity to go to the glory of the Father.  But he also requires daily fidelity from us for His holy will by giving witness of our faith and living with justice and peace in our conscience.
 
However for many people “peace is only the absence of war, or of exterior conflicts and struggles”.  We sometimes see on TV demonstrations calling for peace, no more wars, weapons, etc.  This is not bad, but on the other hand, maybe some of these people are tormented by affective conflicts, abandoned spouses, children with dysfunctional families where there is no respect……and yet they want peace.
 
There are others who seek peace in pleasures, drugs, and when they fail to relieve their inner sufferings, they often commit suicide.  It is incredible the high statistics of suicide among young people in our society.
 
How well does the Lord tell us:  the peace that I give you is not of this world.  Jesus gives us peace, Shalom! He give us peace because He “understands us, He knows us, He knows of the storms in our lives”.  He gives you peace when it seems that everything has failed, like He did to the Apostles when “the doors were locked, for fear…..”.  Jn. 20:19.
 
“My peace I give to you” is a sign of His “closeness to us”, but it is also a commitment to bring that peace into our home and our community.  As Pope Francis says:  Bring that peace to so many who suffer in the periphery of our society through injustices and pain.  Let us pray in the Eucharist to the Prince of Peace for serenity in our hearts and above all to allow us to look towards the future with Christian joy and hope.