Saturday, 27 August 2011

Keep following Jesus!


The last two weeks have been very eventful. WYD in Madrid was a great experience and, thanks be to God, a great way of being able to be a witness for God by even just being there and being able to wear the habit. There were so many positive reactions towards us brother as being young and standing up for our faith, daring to be counter cultural. There were also some very interesting questions being asked about God, the reason why I choose religious life or how one can discern where God is calling you.


However being a Dominican, and as such also valuing my silent time in prayer, I am glad I had the opportunity to do a course straight after WYD which has brought me to Poland. In contrast to the excitement of Madrid, the contrast is quite stark as the retreat house is situated between mountains giving ample opportunity to find time to contemplate, read or even hike in between the regular life and the formal sessions.

It it nice to settle a bit and to think where the road ahead is leading towards. This ties in to the Gospel of this weekend, the twenty second Sunday in ordinary time. Jesus is explaining His disciples that He has to go to Jerusalem and what will happen there, that He will be handed over, killed and being raised on the third day.

Peter stand up and rebukes Jesus saying that that would never happen to Him, but Jesus is stark and says to Peter "get behind me Satan [...] You are thinking not as God does, but as human being do". Jesus continues to say that whoever wants to follow Him needs to deny himself, take up his cross.

We often indeed do think in our own way and not in Gods way. In this time after WYD it is a time to reflect on what God is asking of us, what God is REALY asking of us, and not what we think or want Him to ask. Jesus explained that He would rise again before Peters rebuke, but Peter probably never really got that; he could only see as far as the experience of suffering without seeing the triumph of the Cross.

In order to follow Jesus we need to take up our own crosses and follow Him. But in so doing we need to trust in Him that He will lead us the way! At the end there is the triumph! An event as WYD can really lead us towards an encounter with Christ, but now we are back home we need to make sure we keep walking to road we have chosen, which is the road of life, of happiness and which leads to eternal joy!

4 comments:

ThereseRita said...

Beautiful & inspiring reflection! I love the contrast between Madrid & Poland. You've been blessed to be a blessing to others.

Nuala said...

Thank you Luuk. You weren't just witnesses to the Faith by wearing your habits. You were also in the way that you supported and helped us all on the trip to WYD. I and my daughter had the privilege of sharing that trip with you and your fellow brothers. We saw at close hand how you live your faith and the trip brought us closer to God. It was hard to return to normal life after being on such a spiritual "high". But I still feel since I came home a sort of after effect that will never leave me and that I can see the hand of God in everything I do. Thank you again Luuk for being a witness to God's love for us in the world. Nuala

Nuala said...

Thank you Luuk. You weren't just witnesses to the Faith by wearing your habits. You were also in the way that you supported and helped us all on the trip to WYD. I and my daughter had the privilege of sharing that trip with you and your fellow brothers. We saw at close hand how you live your faith and the trip brought us closer to God. It was hard to return to normal life after being on such a spiritual "high". But I still feel since I came home a sort of after effect that will never leave me and that I can see the hand of God in everything I do.Thanks again for being a witness to God's love for us in the world. Nuala

Barb Schoeneberger said...

God bless you and may you be a good and faithful religious. I'm sure WYD was a blessing to you and you were a blessing to those you met.

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