Readings for Wednesday June 8, 2011
First Reading: Acts 20:28-38
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 68
Gospel: John 17:11b-19
They do not belong to the world any more than I belong to the world. Consecrate them in the truth. Your word is truth. As you sent me into the world, so I sent them into the world. And I consecrate myself for them, so that they also may be consecrated in truth. (Jn 17:16-19)
If you were to look up the word 'consecrate' in the dictionary, you will come up with several definitions. One definition that I particularly like is the following one: "to devote or dedicate to some purpose." What a brilliant, yet simple definition of this word consecrate.
In today's gospel, Jesus is praying to the Father, and in His prayer He asks that the disciples be consecrated in truth. So what does this mean? If we think back to our definition of consecrate, it means that Jesus wants His disciples to be devoted or dedicated to the truth. And, as Pilate would say, what is truth? We also see in this gospel that God's "word is truth." Jesus wants all of His disciples (including us) dedicated to God's word, His truth. We should be living it, believing and trusting it, sharing it with others, just totally wrapped up in His truth. For if we are all truly consecrated to His truth, then nothing can ever stop of from reaching heaven.
But we must be weary, as Saint Paul tells members of the early church in today's first reading. Saint Paul says; "I know that after my departure savage wolves will come among you, and they will not spare the flock. And from your own group, men will come forward perverting the truth to draw the disciples away after them." (Acts 20:29-30) There will always be those who cannot stand God's truth, they are so wrapped up in their own ways that they will seek to destroy and disrupt anything that would threaten their own "truths." We must also be weary because the evil one, the prince of lies, seeks to break the Church and Her body apart. Satan seeks to twist God's truth to veer people away. He has done so since the beginning of time, and has since continued to warp God's truth. We see it greatly today in many forms, contraception, abortion, pornography, homosexuality, atheism, relativism, and many others.
As Christians, we must cling to the truth, we must be fully devoted to it. We must always remember to listen to and follow the Catholic Church, the Church established by Jesus to be "the pillar and foundation of truth." (1 Tim. 3:15) If we are to be truly consecrated in the truth, then we must always stay close to home, the Church. Let us always remember that, we were made for God, for His truth, not for the world.
Father above, we thank you and praise you for the gift of this day. Lord, we praise you and thank you for all that you have blessed us with. Help us to stay grounded in your truth, and to never veer. Protect us from the evil one who only seeks to confuse and scatter your disciples away from the truth. Lord, give us the courage and strength to go out and share your truth with others, and to be the disciples that you created us to be. We ask this all through Christ our Lord. Amen.