In a reflection that I was reading about this week’s second reading, the author ended with a question: How has God’s love changed my life? To be honest, when I first saw it, I drew a blank. I know this is a question that I really need to sit with and I invite you this week to do the same. In today’s first reading, we see how God’s love changed the Church by providing a replacement for Judas. The Spirit of God guided Peter and the other apostles to provide for leadership and a person to witness to Jesus. Obviously, Matthias must have known Jesus and had been with him since the beginning. He had a relationship with Jesus as friend, Lord and Savior. Jesus’s love for him and the love Matthias witnessed on the Cross changed his life.
However, that still does not answer my question. How has God’s love changed my life? The most basic change for me was a realization that Jesus wasn’t something I read about in a theology book or in the catechism, but a real and living person who continues to be as alive as he was 2000 + years ago. His presence is as real today and he continues to call people to follow Him. This Jesus knows me; and He knows you. Jesus want to be so connected to us that he became one like this. Jesus loved us with perfect love. On the Cross, he gave His all for me and for you. By rising again, he restored our relationship with Him as had been intended since the beginning.
How has God’s love changed me life? He has been there for me in the hardest of times. At funerals, I often talk about the dark valley of the 23rd psalm and how David may have based this on a dangerous road outside Jerusalem which goes in and out of dark places and was known for the thieves that stalked it. In all our lives, there are dark valleys and He is right there besides us……I know because He has been there with me. His Love has surrounded me with light and gave me the courage to go on. As I have let Jesus become more my friend than an idea, I have found a peace that lasts no matter what. As I have allowed myself to be closer to Him, the joy that He gives has grown. He want to do the same for you.
How has God’s love changed my life? In more ways than I can say, and He has done the same for you. May our prayer this week before Pentecost be that the Spirit inspire us and give us the vision and courage to proclaim that Jesus has changed our lives and the fire to tell everyone we meet how Jesus’s love has changed our lives.