Readings: Acts 15:22-29; Psalm 67:2-8; Rev 21:10-14; John 14:23-29
Lent and Easter occur each year as a spiritual ‘reset’: discard our old habits and adopt practices and a frame of mind that will draw us closer to God and God’s reign. Today’s Gospel sets out the promises for those who believe.
Firstly, Jesus said, “Whoever loves me will keep my word, and my Father will love them,
and we will come to them and make our dwelling with them.” There can be times when we feel adrift and alone – but this promise of faith of God being with us? Happy that person! Yet, it is a different way of saying what we hear at Christmas: Emmanuel – ‘God with us’. If we truly love Jesus that means that we pray regularly and are also a person of love and compassion to those around us. So our faith and living it are what connect us to God.
Likewise with that connection in faith we will listen to and hear the promptings of the Holy Spirit – so that we can call to mind at the right time the teachings of Jesus. Thus the faith connection can keep us on an even keel through life’s challenges.
The third promise Jesus makes in this Gospel is peace. Our faith connection can help us to deal with what life throws at us and can allow us to be people of love and compassion. Surely a consequence of that is being at peace.
So, whether it is through our connection with God – as Father, Son and Spirit – or through being at peace, faith brings rewards that are worth the effort.