FIFTH SUNDAY OF EASTER
(White) Cycle A/Year I (May 14, 2017)
Acts 6:1-7/1 Pt 2:4-9/Jn 14:1-12
“Lord, we do not know where you are going, so how can we know the way” (Jn 14:5)? This question of Thomas the Apostle expressed the puzzlement of all the rest of the Apostles. Jesus bade goodbye to His Apostles as He was about to leave this earth for His glorification in Heaven after His suffering and death and resurrection. The Apostles naturally did not know the nature of His leaving and where He would go. Although they had an initial belief regarding Jesus as the true Messiah, yet they did not have a holistic knowledge about the true natures and person of Jesus. True to his personality as a doubter, Thomas articulated his inquiry.
“How can we know the way?” Thomas’ question is actually the question of each person seeking for personal fulfillment and realization in life. All want to be happy but not all know the way to realize their dream. Majority of the people equate money to happiness. If you have a lot of money, then you are certainly happy because you can buy and do what you want. But money often brings more trouble in life than peace of mind. A lot of rich people cannot sleep without taking sleeping pills, drugs or at least liquor. They are worried about how to protect their belongings and how to make them grow. Some consider power as the way to self-fulfillment. With power you can get what you want and be happy. But power does not satisfy the longing of the persons for power because once they have it, they always desire to maintain it and make it even stronger. Power does not even give tranquility to those who have it for power fears and is insecure in the presence of another power. Others treat fame as the way to self-realization. When you are famous, then you must be happy for the glory and victory always belong to the famous. But fame like power and money is not a way to genuine happiness. Fame is always accompanied by many insecurities and worries in life especially on how to preserve it.
Bewildered by the many things that the modern world offers, some search personal happiness through satisfaction of desires for physical pleasures through liquor, drugs, cigarette, sex, and others. Yet these bring even greater problems as they can cause harmful diseases. Others look for personal realization by excelling in works, sports or other activities. But these too can cause dangerous attitudes like becoming workaholic and having unbalanced lifestyle. Still others seek for happiness through personal resignation to fate. They become so obsessive with all forms of divination like horoscopes, interpretation of omens, and recourse to mediums. Divination, on the other hand, aside from being a form of direct offense against the Divine Providence of God the Father, paralyzes man’s capacity to realize his dreams and leads man to have less initiative and become less active in life.
The good news is that Christ, as our Savior and Lord, never wants man to be lost in the journey in life just as He never wants His Apostles to lose Him. To Thomas’ and our personal question regarding the way to life and happiness, Jesus categorically declares: “I am the Way; I am Truth and Life” (Jn 14:6a).
Thus, in the midst of our pursuit for life and happiness and confused as we are by the many non-essential things that our modern world offers, Jesus Christ comes to our rescue to not only guide us to what we want but also to personally give it to us when He says: “I am the Way; I am Truth and Life” (Jn 14:6a). Being the Son of God, He is the Truth and Life and therefore, the Way Himself. Only He is capable to give us the inner desire of our heart and the ambition of our mind because He not only creates our being and saves us from eternal damnation but also sustains our life even up to eternity. The fact is all our desire is but to return to the home of our Heavenly Father, the source of our life and being. Jesus Christ proclaims: “No one can come to the Father except through me” (Jn 14:6b). Jesus Christ then is the Way to the Father and to our self-realization and happiness since, being the only Son of God, only He knows the Father. Let us ask the help of the Blessed Mother Mary who being the Mother of God is always in the presence of Christ and the Heavenly Father. Through her intercessions, may she lead us to Christ and God the Father for us to find life and live it to the full.