HOMILY FOR FRIDAY OF THE FIFTH WEEK OF EASTER
HOMILY THEME: LET YOUR NEIGHBOR SEE THE JESUS IN YOU
BY: Fr. Benny Tuazon
(Jn. 15:12-17) Friday of the Fifth Week of Easter
In the day’s Gospel Jesus teaches us to love one another. But it does not end there. He gave His love for us as the model of that loving. In effect, He was saying that we should be Christ to others. Part of that loving is to regard our neighbors as friends and not slaves. As a measure, we follow the commandments given by God and taught by Jesus.
No less than the greatest love must be shared to our neighbors. It is the love of a friend who is willing to offer his life. We usually go only so far in our love. Many times I had been asked how long and how much must we love. Love knows no measure. It is not a matter of time or instances. It is an attitude and a decision for the other. That is why JESUS gave the ultimate act of laying down one’s life for another. That is the greatest love. And Jesus did that for us. As He had said, He treats us as His friend and His slaves. Now, we do not have reasons not to do the same. We may not be asked to outdo Him, but we need at least to measure with Him.
We believe we can do this to our family members, relatives, and friends. But not to everyone. If we see it that way, then, we are wanting in our Christian commitment. Jesus did not discriminate. In fact, the command includes our enemies. He commanded us to love our enemies. It is an unconditional love. It is possible because loving is a decision. And since our neighbor is anyone in need, we ought to love that neighbor whoever he is, whatever is his status, race, education and what not. He is God’s creation, in His image and likeness. He deserves our love, an offering of our life, if necessary.
This is the Christian imperative. You can just imagine if every Christian will be faithful to this? The world will be a better place to live in. In fact, that was how God planned and wanted it to be. Thank God for Christians. But we need to make it happen. We need to live our faith.
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