11 April, Saturday – (Epistle) Dying and Rising

Epistle for Easter Vigil

Rm 6:3-11
Ps 117 (118):1-2, 16-17, 22-23

So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.

I did not quite comprehend the concept of my baptism being the death of my old self and that “all of us who have been baptised into Christ Jesus were baptised into his death” until more recently. Just as he was raised again, out new self too is risen. I thought it was just a matter of being an official Catholic. But now I totally understand its significance — Jesus has not only taken away THE sin that I was born with at baptism, he also takes away all my menial sins after each confession. I know that not only am I absolved of my sins, I “walk in newness of life”.

Having found Jesus and walking with him each day is the best thing that’s ever happened to me. I am happy to say that my shameful past and my old life (the one before I met Christ) are dead and buried, and I don’t intend to exhume them. The amount of useless trashy novels that I used to indulge in, coveting material goods endlessly, stressing over every little thing and upsetting myself and those around me, hurling hurtful words at my spouse whenever we argued, stealing from others (including my boss’s time), a lie here and a lie there without conscience … now when I look back at the things I used to do, if I had carried on, my life would have been so empty and meaningless, yet, at the same time, burdensome.  

Going for confessions can be so scary if we don’t have the right frame of mind. We often feel shameful and fearful of being judged. But if we truly feel sorry for what we have done and for having offended Jesus, we will not be so afraid to go for confession. We will not wait to reconcile with Jesus again (this is how I feel each time after my Conversion Experience Retreat).

During this Covid-19 pandemic, along with the suspension of masses and penitential services, skipping the sacrament of reconciliation this Lent would be easy. However, I am not so comfortable with keeping my sins for so long, even if they are not so serious. But, as the Lord always knows my heart and what I need (he knows I can’t wait to unload my burdens), he found a way for me to lift up some of those unresolved issues. Soon I found myself making an appointment for confession and now I can walk renewed again.

I feel so alive now knowing that Jesus is in me and that I have found true purpose in life, and to walk in his footsteps.

(Today’s OXYGEN by Cynthia Chew)

Prayer: Dear Jesus, help us to die to our sins so that we may live. May we never let shame or fear keep us far away from you.

Thanksgiving: Thank you Lord Jesus, for always watching over us and seeing to our needs. 

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