A True Friend

December 7, 2016
Memorial of Saint Ambrose, Bishop and Doctor of the Church
The Gospel Today
Matthew 11:28-30

Jesus said to the crowds:
“Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened,
and I will give you rest.
Take my yoke upon you and learn from me,
for I am meek and humble of heart;
and you will find rest for yourselves.
For my yoke is easy, and my burden light.”

REFLECTION (Sem. Jul Elden D. Nuique)

Today’s Gospel shows how Jesus consoles us by offering a yoke that is easy and a burden that is light. The only condition is that we imitate him and be “meek and humble of heart.” (Matthew 11, 29) For such a priceless gift, its cost is not so easy to attain.

A couple of months ago, I caused great pain to a friend. I carelessly spoke something in public that embarrassed him. He confronted me about it and I felt the immense distress that I inflicted upon him. Even though I immediately apologized, the damage was already done. In that situation, I was far from being meek and humble. My words betrayed the pride and malice that was in my heart. It was an example of the self-absorption that had no regard for the possible suffering of others.

My mistake shows that it is very difficult to walk the straight and narrow path that Jesus has left for us to follow. It takes much prayer and scrutiny of our actions in order to remain true to our Lord. Yet all is not lost. That friend I have offended remains my friend. Before our parting of ways during the confrontation, I have profusely apologized and he has sincerely forgiven me. It is a humbling experience for me, which is compounded by the fact that my friend has shown great humility and meekness of spirit by coming face to face with his offender, instead of spreading gossip about me to others. His example gives me the clear illustration of a close imitation of Christ. I hope to learn from him and to live out that lesson for the rest of my days.

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