The Gospel Today
The Seventh Day in the Octave of Christmas
In the beginning was the Word,
and the Word was with God,
and the Word was God.
He was in the beginning with God.
All things came to be through him,
and without him nothing came to be.
What came to be through him was life,
and this life was the light of the human race;
the light shines in the darkness,
and the darkness has not overcome it.
A man named John was sent from God.
He came for testimony, to testify to the light,
so that all might believe through him.
He was not the light,
but came to testify to the light.
The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world.
He was in the world,
and the world came to be through him,
but the world did not know him.
He came to what was his own,
but his own people did not accept him.
But to those who did accept him
he gave power to become children of God,
to those who believe in his name,
who were born not by natural generation
nor by human choice nor by a man’s decision
but of God.
And the Word became flesh
and made his dwelling among us,
and we saw his glory,
the glory as of the Father’s only-begotten Son,
full of grace and truth.
John testified to him and cried out, saying,
“This was he of whom I said,
‘The one who is coming after me ranks ahead of me
because he existed before me.’”
From his fullness we have all received,
grace in place of grace,
because while the law was given through Moses,
grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
No one has ever seen God.
The only-begotten Son, God, who is at the Father’s side,
has revealed him.
Reflection (Sem. Herwyn T. Bulaun)
Today’s Gospel seems contradictory to the “date” today. Today is the last day of the calendar year whereas the Gospel talks about how God started creating everything on earth. However, when you come to think of it, only when we end something, can we begin something else. The Word ended the formless and lifeless world and began creating forms and life in the world. The Word who ended the darkness at the beginning of the creation also ended the darkness in the life of man when He was incarnated. The Word of God Incarnate is He who we now call Jesus Christ. A few days ago we celebrated the mystery of Incarnation. By means of this Incarnation, we always believe that God is always with us, regardless of whatever happens.
When I was about 13 years old I needed to undergo heart surgery. There was no certainty about the procedure and I was also afraid of the possible outcome. The procedure was also painful. However, with the prayers of my family, relatives and friends, I submitted myself to the process and, by the grace of God, I survived the dreadful heart disease. God allowed me to face my possible end, which resulted into life.
They say that the end is a natural part of our life. Whether we like it or not it will come. However, if we can only be mindful of this end, then we know that we need to live our life in the most meaningful way that we can. Furthermore, the Birth of Jesus in our midst gives us all the hope not to be afraid of the end, for it is the way to the fullness of joy where God is.
The moment we come into realization about our limited time, that is the time that we can really experience how to live…as how Jesus lived.