May 27, 2009
Wednesday of the Seventh Week of Easter
Lifting up his eyes to heaven, Jesus prayed, saying: “Holy Father, keep them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one just as we are. When I was with them I protected them in your name that you gave me, and I guarded them, and none of them was lost except the son of destruction, in order that the scripture might be fulfilled. But now I am coming to you. I speak this in the world so that they may share my joy completely. I gave them your word, and the world hated them, because they do not belong to the world any more than I belong to the world. I do not ask that you take them out of the world but that you keep them from the evil one. 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.”
Introductory Prayer: Lord, I believe in you. I believe that you are here with me. I thank you for your loving presence in my life. I place all of my hope in you. I humbly offer you the love in my heart and my desire to continue your mission in the world.
Petition: Lord, strengthen my resolve to serve you.
1. He Protected His Own in the World
Jesus completed his mission of protecting those entrusted to his care. He fulfilled his vocation as a man; not one of his apostles was lost except the son of destruction. We have his protection still. He sits at the right hand of the Father to intercede for us. We have the help of his mother, Mary, and all the saints in heaven. We are surrounded by a great crowd of saints, who support our efforts to live as God wants us to live. They are God’s gift to protect us on our pilgrimage in life.
2. He Does Not Take Them Out of the World
As Jesus was leaving the world, he prayed for his disciples. He did not pray that they would be taken out of the world, but that they be kept from the evil one. Sometimes we can feel beaten up and broken, and we seek to flee the battle. Jesus needs us in the combat and entrusts us with the fight. He doesn’t keep us from the battle, instead offers us the strength of his help. He is with us, fighting at our side. He is within us, giving us the interior strength to do his will.
3. In the World, but Not of the World
Although we are in the world, we are here as pilgrims. We are passing through on our way to heaven. We have a mission: to save the souls that God has entrusted to our care. It is easy to get distracted, to begin to look for calm, ease or a more comfortable resting place for our weary souls and bodies. The world remains attractive to our fallen nature. Alluring advertisements can leave their mark on us, and we can desire the things of earth more than the treasures of heaven. This is why we must give priority to prayer in our life and contemplate life from the perspective of eternity.
Conversation with Christ: Jesus, protect me from the evil one. He is battling me on many fronts. Keep me strong in your love. Don’t let me give in to discouragement or despair. I have the protection of your love and your intercession. Increase my hope in you. Help me to continue your work in the world.
Resolution: I will speak to someone about Christ today, sharing with them the love he lavishes upon us.
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