Love one another. The greatest commandment, the simplest commandment — and if you’ve ever loved anyone, you know it’s also the hardest. How often do we take a moment to consider the action Jesus is asking us to take and the choice he is asking us to make?
The Bible tells us that when we bear fruit as good everyday stewards, it is for the Father’s glory. We are the branch on His magnificent tree. We also tend to reflect how well the other branches around us are incorporating the nutrients coming their way.
It’s right for us to always keep in mind that Jesus is God. But we also have to remember that he was man. He got hungry. He cried when he felt sad and laughed when he felt happy. It’s the tightrope walk we all try to balance every day, honoring our human emotions while still answering God’s call to be better.
The Apostle Thomas, who couldn’t bring himself to accept that Jesus had risen from the dead without seeing him, is such an utterly relatable figure in the Gospels. He’s not believing the hype. He’s going to be the only judge of what is real and what is fiction.
If we learned anything from Holy Week — from the Passion and death of the Lord — it’s that we can’t press fast-forward on the hardships of life. That tension, that loss, that fear — it’s crucial, isn’t it? As Catholics, we are who we are because of Easter. But Easter doesn’t happen without Good Friday.
It’s okay for us to be excited for Easter. We’ve waited so long, after all. In my opinion it’s one of the best feelings there is: the yearning we have in our hearts for the Resurrection as we embark on Palm Sunday. But my friends, we must keep our feet on the ground.
We parents know that it’s tricky, tackling the topic of fear with our kids. We want them to know that it’s okay to be scared, that it’s something we all feel. Jesus seems to be the parent who is gently broaching the topic of fear with his children.
As we grow up, it is sometimes a struggle for us to imagine that our parents understand us. It can seem impossible that Mom and Dad remember the stress of exam week or peer pressure. We’re often the same way about God. We gripe about what He asks of us.
But by now, these Lenten resolutions are no longer novelties — they’ve joined the ranks of everyday inconveniences, which somehow are the hardest to bear. Because transformation, in real life, happens in inches, just as a battle is won slowly.