Hungering for Christ

THIRD SUNDAY OF LENT

Exod.17:3-7/Ps.94:1-2.6-9/Rom.5:1-2.5-8/Jn.4:5-42


Hungering for Christ


The pilgrim Church is apparently reliving the experiences of Massah and Meribah. The grumblings against divine virtues and morals are growing louder by the minute. The quest for instant gratification of the flesh, on all levels, is growing louder. At present, a new paradigm shift is ongoing. Unlike Moses, world leaders are conceding; they believe human rights and freedom entitle people to fulfil every desire of the flesh, no matter how based they are. People no longer believe God can and will take care of all their needs while they are on pilgrimage with him to the destination he has in mind for his chosen ones.


Redemptive suffering is a spiritual tool in the hand of God carving and imprinting his qualities and values into our flesh and soul that we may reflect his real image and likeness as children of God in the world. Through redemptive suffering, God purifies, justifies, and glorifies us and prepares us to be his heirs and coheirs with Christ. We cannot enter the new Israel and Jerusalem of God while still craving the things of the flesh - when God provides our daily bread. If we try to, we will be working against our best spiritual interest and salvation. We must never forget the trials of Israel when they lived only for the flesh. They suffered and died (Ps.78:29-39).


With the perpetual presence of the Holy Eucharist, humankind cannot deny that God in Christ is always present among us. He is much closer to us than he was with Israel of old. Thus, God continues to appeal to us, "O that today you would listen to his voice: 'Harden, not your hearts as at Meribah, as on that day in the desert when your father put me to the test; when they tried me, though they saw my works' (Ps.94:8-9)."


Christ Jesus taught us to pray, "Give us this day our daily bread (Matt.6:11)." Christ assured us his Father would not give us a stone if we ask for bread. God will not give us a snake if we ask for fish. The Father will not give us a scorpion if we ask for an egg (Lk.11:11-12). We have the assurance of Christ only good will come our way if we listen and obey the voice of God. I will be a perfect liar if I ever say God has never provided all my needs. Even when the future seems impossible. God sends me help just when I need it most. The story of the woman at the well must teach us, only one thing will quench our thirst and satisfy our hunger, the grace of God welling up in our lives.


O God, you are the source and summit of my life. I will live and die for you.

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