In today’s first reading, Prophet Jeremiah spoke about God’s promise of the “New Covenant”
Why is there a need for a “New Covenant” since God has been faithful to His promise to the forefathers? Throughout the Old Testament, the relationship of God with His people had been difficult, causing the old Covenant to be broken. Therefore, with God’s grace and mercy, He started the “New Covenant” with His people that will last forever. His divine plan is to bring His people closer to Him through the conversion of their hearts. (Jer 31: 33-34). Not only will they reconcile with God but embrace His gift of Salvation through His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ. (John 3: 16).
St Paul’s letter to Hebrew in the second reading summarises the life of Jesus and His obedience to God. It speaks clearly about the suffering of the Lord who empties Himself totally to obey God’s plan (Mat 26: 39, 42). Many of us would agree that it is easier to be obedient to our superiors or parents when the experience is pleasant. However, we struggle to be obedient when the experience becomes unpleasant. Why did Jesus choose to submit to death on the cross? He did it to show us that as fully man, He is able to obey the will of our Father. He knows our weakness based on His earthly experience. He chose to suffer through obedience in order to draw us to God. Will we give our lives in obedience to God and experience joy in our suffering?
In the Gospel, Jesus revealed His death and resurrection in the parable of the seed that dies. Just like a seed that must die and be buried in the soil before it begins its new life, Jesus needs to endure physical death to bring us a new life that will last forever. In fact, the uncertainty and fatigue brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic provides the opportunity for us to reflect on our focus in life. Four weeks of Lent have already passed, have we made efforts to move forward in our faith journey by dying to our old self and sins? Have we quietened our hearts to listen to the voice of the Lord? Have we taken steps to live up to our baptismal vows? Let us not procrastinate any longer. Let us take up our cross and live for Jesus Christ. We will experience the fullness of life from our Father and be His instruments to reach out to others.
by Veronica & Benedict