May 21, 2017: Sixth Sunday of Easter
Jesus said to his disciples:
“If you love me, you will keep my commandments.
And I will ask the Father,
and he will give you another Advocate to be with you always,
the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot accept,
because it neither sees nor knows him.
But you know him, because he remains with you, and will be in you.
I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you.
In a little while the world will no longer see me,
but you will see me, because I live and you will live.
On that day you will realize that I am in my Father and you are in me and I in you.
Whoever has my commandments and observes them is the one who loves me.
And whoever loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love them and reveal myself to them.” (John 14:15-21)
Today’s Gospel gives us such reassurance. Jesus promises his followers that he will not abandon them or leave them orphans, without guidance or protection. The Holy One will send the Spirit “to be with you always.” The Father, Jesus and the Spirit — he speaks of the mystery, the gift, the presence, the promise. And how are disciples to respond? With love, by keeping and observing “my commandments.” Jesus has taught what those commandments are: love God with all your heart and soul and mind and strength, and your neighbor as yourself.
In this Easter time, we are called to experience the one who assures us “you will see me, because I live.” We are called to realize that Jesus is “in my Father and you are in me and I am in you.” If we find this difficult to understand, Jesus draws us to another level of comprehension: “love me … and I will reveal myself to you.”
I celebrate the Spirit given to me through Baptism and shared throughout the church in this time of Easter renewal. In prayer, I ask the Spirit to guide me, to help me respond more deeply to the promises of Jesus, and to share his love with everyone I meet this week.