HOMILY FOR THE SIXTH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME YEAR A BY REV FR EKESHIRI JUDE EMEKA CSSP.
THEME: I WILL NOT LEAVE YOU ORPHAN (John 14:15-21).
Believing is not something that comes with ease. In fact, it is very difficult to convince people about a particular product or ideas, if that product or idea hasn’t been tested and found worthy. It takes extra courage and convictions to believe in something which what it promises isn’t visible. When a person believes in another person or a thing, what really is the motivating factor for such belief?
The first reading gave us two possible reasons why the people embraced the preaching of Philip about Jesus and the gospel of salvation. It says that, “the people united in welcoming the message Philip preached, either because they had heard of the miracles he worked or because they saw them for themselves. There were, for example, unclean spirits that came shrieking out of many who were possessed, and several paralytics and cripples were cured. As a result there was great rejoicing in that town” (Acts 8:5-8,14-17).
A lot of us are moved by what we see or have heard. But a person’s personal experience of Jesus can make his or her belief in Jesus stronger and beneficial. There are much more these days fake miracle worker who end up exploiting the people’s vulnerability and interests in miracles. But, a true believer may not need all those physical convictions to believe but what the person requires is just having faith in Jesus.
Peter encourages us in the second reading to have a pure conscience and to live lives worthy of convictions so that we can prove to those who do not believe in the resurrection wrong and to those who ridicule the believers for their belief, when all things are made perfect.
The gospel is really a farewell message of Jesus to His disciples. Jesus seeks faithfulness from them if they truly love Him. He says, if you love me, you will keep my commandments. There is a synchronisation of love and commitment in this command. Love enables us to act faithfully to the dictates of God. Love, is a unifying agent in every relationship.
Jesus further, promised His disciples never to leave them orphan but to send someone who will look after them after He had gone because they were already terrified by His absence. Jesus wants to fill that void His absence could cause them, because, He love them deeply. He says to them, “I shall ask the Father, And he will give you another advocate to be with you for ever, that Spirit of truth whom the world can never receive since it neither sees nor knows him; but you know him, because he is with you, he is in you. I will not leave you orphans; I will come back to you” (John 14:15-21). Jesus is not just promising them anyone else but the Holy spirit, who is the spirit of truth. He will teach them further and prepare them for the task ahead.
Dear friends, you are not alone in your life’s struggles. Jesus is with you since He has said that He will not leave you orphan. We need to believe in His word because, He can never fail us, and He wants to fill our emptiness with the Holy spirit. But, He demands our commitment if we truly love Him. We are called to believe in Jesus and be committed to His commands if we truly want to receive the advocate, the spirit of truth from the Father. Peace be with you.