13 April 2019

Scripture Reading: John 12:27-36

27 “Now my soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour. 28 Father, glorify your name!”

Then a voice came from heaven, “I have glorified it, and will glorify it again.” 29 The crowd that was there and heard it said it had thundered; others said an angel had spoken to him.

30 Jesus said, “This voice was for your benefit, not mine. 31 Now is the time for judgment on this world; now the prince of this world will be driven out. 32 And I, when I am lifted up[g] from the earth, will draw all people to myself.” 33 He said this to show the kind of death he was going to die.

34 The crowd spoke up, “We have heard from the Law that the Messiah will remain forever, so how can you say, ‘The Son of Man must be lifted up’? Who is this ‘Son of Man’?”

35 Then Jesus told them, “You are going to have the light just a little while longer. Walk while you have the light, before darkness overtakes you. Whoever walks in the dark does not know where they are going.36 Believe in the light while you have the light, so that you may become children of light.” When he had finished speaking, Jesus left and hid himself from them.

His Suffering Strengthens Us – Augustine

I heard him saying previously….”If anyone wants to serve me, let him follow me. And where I am, there my servant shall also be.” And so, I was all on fire to despise the world, and the whole of this life, however long it might be, had become only a vapour before my eyes. in comparison with my love for eternal things, everything temporal had lost its value for me. But now, this same Lord, whose words had transported me from the weakness that was mine to the strength that was his – I now hear him saying, “How is my soul troubled.” What does this mean? How can you ask my soul to follow you when I see your own in so much turmoil? How can I endure when even a strength as great as yours feels it is a heavy burden? What kind of foundation am I left with when the Rock is giving way? But the Lord is already forming the answer inside my own head, saying: You shall follow me that much better, because it is to strengthen your own endurance that I included this. You have heard, as if addressed to yourself, the voice of my strength. Now hear in me the voice of your infirmity. I supply strength when you need to run without slowing you down, but I take on myself whatever makes you afraid, paving the way for you to continue your march. Lord, I acknowledge your mercy! You, who are so great, allowed yourself to be troubled in order to console all of those in your body who are troubled by the continual experience of their own weakness – keeping them from perishing utterly in despair.

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