29 March, Sunday – Accepting No as an answer

Ezekiel 37:12-14
Romans 8:8-11
John 11:1-45

but I know that, even now, whatever you ask of God, he will grant you

As an undergraduate, I often heard of friends who asked their professors for extensions for their assignments. However, there was one professor which would always not reply to his emails. This made my friends wonder if he received their email request. Endless conversations would revolve around on how they should proceed until somebody pointed out that not answering the student is in itself an answer. I believe that the readings in today Gospel remind us of the need to accept “No” as an answer from God.

The death of Lazarus was indeed a painful experience for Jesus. In fact, we read that “Jesus wept” (John 11:35) which is the shortest verse in the Bible. He must have felt a loss for his good friend. Perhaps Jesus weeps every time he sees us sin. Sin weakens and destroys the relationship we have with God. It is one of those things which bring us enormous pain in the relationship that God has with us. Maybe sometimes God says no to us in our prayers because granting us what we ask for could result in the weakening of our relationship with God.

Jesus asks that we stay close to Him in every time and age but especially so in this season of Lent where we are called to unite with the sufferings which He is going through. Covid19 is causing a lot of faithful to be unable to receive the Holy Eucharist but perhaps in this time of absence, we can choose to remain closer to God through the reading of Sacred Scripture and the reading of good Catholic Christian authors. These will allow us to become closer to God and allow us to discover the deeper meaning of the answer of “No” in our prayers to God

(Today’s Oxygen by Nicholas Chia)

Prayer: Heavenly Father, grant us the grace to accept your will in our lives.

Thanksgiving: We give thanks for all who show us love in our lives.

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