Saturday 14 February 2015

Wednesday of the 5th Week of Easter

A leaf cannot survive on its own. It needs to be part of a shrub or a tree so that it can grow and prosper. When a leaf falls from the shrub or the tree, what happens? It slowly dies and eventually it becomes compost or fertiliser for other plants. It could also end up as food for insects and animals. In some cases, the leaf could end up as part of a nest or part of shelter for insects and animals. Whatever the outcome may be, the leaf is dead, finito.

In today's Gospel, Jesus reminds us: "As a branch cannot bear fruit all by itself, but must remain part of the vine, neither can you unless you remain in me. I am the vine, you are the branches. Whoever remains in me, with me in him, bears fruit in plenty; for cut off from me you can do nothing. Anyone who does not remain in me is like a branch that has been thrown away – he withers; these branches are collected and thrown on the fire, and they are burnt." Just as a leaf cannot live and prosper for long if it is cut off from the shrub or tree, we too will not be able to live and prosper for long if we are are cut off from Jesus.

That is why Jesus is inviting us, beckoning us to "make your home in me, as I make mine in you." When we do so, we would then be able to live and prosper, and bear fruit in plenty. When we allow ourselves to be pruned by Jesus, when we make effort to seek forgiveness for the sins we have committed and do our best to avoid sinning, we would bear even more fruit. Ultimately, we have a choice: to be happy, grow and prosper in Jesus; or to go our own way and bear the consequences. Let us choose wisely, for our eternal future is at stake.

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