After this I looked, and there was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, robed in white, with palm branches in their hands. I said to him, “Sir, you are the one that knows.” Then he said to me, “These are they who have come out of the great ordeal; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.
For this reason they are before the throne of God, and worship him day and night within his temple, and the one who is seated on the throne will shelter them. They will hunger no more, and thirst no more; the sun will not strike them, nor any scorching heat; for the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd, and he will guide them to springs of the water of life, and God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.”
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved (http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translations)
This 4th Sunday of Easter the emphasis in the readings shifts from Jesus’ appearances after the Resurrection to the various ways the early followers of Jesus began to translate their Easter faith and joy into responsible Christian action on behalf of the gospel.
Today’s reading from Revelation gives us a sense of this vast crowd of believers that you and I are part of…from every nation and tribe, people and tongue. All of us bring “all that we are and all we have” to the Lord, as the gospel reminds us.
Let’s examine that “all” for a minute. Presuming that Jesus is serious, then that “all” must include…my strengths and limitations, my success and failures; my health and physical limitations; parts of my life I regret and parts I am proud of.
The “all” must include my family and neighborhood, those I love and those harder to like. The “all” includes “us” and “them”…for with God there is no “them.” This applies to the Church as well.
This week of Easter grace may the Risen Lord’s healing touch energize us to become witnesses of Jesus’ life and resurrection wherever we go, whatever we do.
–The Jesuit Prayer Team
Lord, we bring to you “all that we are and all that we have.” We share with you our strengths and limitations, our successes and failures; our health and physical limitations; and the parts of our life we regret and the parts that we are proud of. We pray for those so dear to us. We pray for those who irritate us; who have hurt us, betrayed or brought discouragement and disillusionment to our life. We give you our all and we receive your all.
–The Jesuit Prayer TeamPlease share the Good Word with your friends!