chosen

For those of us who were brought up to see following Christ as our own initiative, OUR response, OUR desire and OUR action, there’s a little life-changing word directly from Jesus for us. This encouragement is almost hidden among the many beautiful messages of friendship and love in today’s gospel.

Take a moment to read this verse.

Jesus said to his disciples:
“It was not you who chose me,
but I who chose you”

Now re-read it.

“It was not you who chose me,
but I who chose you”

Now ponder it for another ten seconds before reading further, and savour the significance of these words from Jesus directly to you:

“It was not you who chose me,
but I who chose you”

Our problem is that we put the focus on ourselves too much forgetting that the life of Christian faith is not us working hard trying to please and appease God but a response to the experience of divine love, and a knowledge of being chosen by the God who loves us more than we could ever love ourselves.

Any choice we might feel as though we are making for Jesus is simply a response to his choice of us.

We are chosen. We are loved.

Pedro Arrupe SJ was the Superior General of the Society of Jesus for eighteen years from 1965 until a debilitating stroke required him to be replaced in this position in 1983. He did not find this easy, and for the next ten years until his death in 1991 he suffered greatly.

In the midst of this suffering he wrote the perfect prayer for the disciple of Jesus who is struggling with personal suffering. You might like to share this prayer with them telling them something of the circumstance of suffering that led Arrupe to write this.

“More than ever I find myself in the hands of God.
This is what I have wanted all my life from my youth.
But now there is a difference;
the initiative is entirely with God.
It is indeed a profound spiritual experience
to know and feel myself so totally in God’s hands”.

An Invitation:

  • Spend a few moments savouring Arrupe’s reflection, noting especially that the more we grow in relationship with Jesus, the more become aware that the initiative is entirely with God.
  • Pray to Sleep (a ten minute bedtime audio reflection) at this link.
  • Today’s readings at this link.
  • Send your prayer requests to john@fff.org.nz. Each day I will add the initials of those we pray for to this list. Take a moment, perhaps 15 seconds, to pray in whatever way you choose for those whose initials appear below, and don’t hesitate to send repeat requests for prayer. 

Let us pray today (Friday) especially for:     LS (RIP),  AR,  TT,  BP,  MP,  PP,  GTD (RIP2015),  PB,  LM,  JK,  MK,  TJO, LB, DD, JRA,  FL, JU,   SLJ.  SLJ. JJJ.  MPJ,  JPM, MLFJ, MD,

Family suffering a sudden death. For neurological healing. Sister’s recovery from rare cancer. Severe heart condition. For one who is experiencing grief and trauma following losing his beautiful brother to suicide. Thanksgiving to God for enabling us to bear the unbearable. Brother-in-law’s new health problem after surgery.  Need for prayer before confession this Friday – praying that this will be a turning point. Diagnosis with breast Cancer and lockdown delayed treatment now suffering depression.  4th anniversary of mother’s death. For healing of guilt. Needing strength to rebuild business.  In thanksgiving for the man (unknown initials) whose death enabled his kidney to give life to a family member.  Niece who has contracted Covid-19, Grand-daughter at risk of anorexia.

Thursday:  SLJ,  JJJ,  RM,  SJ,  SF, SLJ,  JS,  FS,  MD,  GPD,  JMC,  AM & I,  MS,  MC, MR,  JCP,  MON,  SS,  MS, OD, ND, CD, JD, JD & KJ,  EJH,  ARO,  

Wednesday:   JS,  FS,  SF,  GJG (RIP),  JDG,  MD,  CGW,  SD,  TK,  JK,  RF,  GN,  OP,  GC, TN,  MC,  KJ,  SL,  AN,

Tuesday:   JMT,  KJ,   MD,  PM, MC, DP,  KD, AD,  BA,  RF,  MC,  PR,  JH,  GPB,

Monday:   AD, NF, PR, GPB,  BA, MA (RIP), LM,  SB,  MO’D,  S&SW,  DMcA,  SS, VM, PM, NM, 

Sunday:   BB,  BR, RM, IW,  BL,  AM, JM, SM, JH, CSL, BS, AW,  MR, SR, JC, LR, JF, AB, AB, MB, CB, LJ, AF, JB, CB, SB, MB (RIP), MR, MH, SR, RS, MTM, OH, MM (RIP),  SGS.  MC,  EH,  MAC, NDM,  JG, SL, JD, 

Last week: AJ,  MLJ,  SkJ, MS (RIP), LMP,  GRJP,  JF, IC, RF,  JC,  LHG, LKG, FMG, GMG,  GC, AW,  DM,  MM, PM, ML (RIP), JMC, PN, KM, JJ, MJ, AWS, HGTJ, JHWW, HJPM, MB (RIP), MD, DN, QRPTT, LTP, NVVO, PEGMW, MC, LM & JM, BM, BP, CP, PP, CH, NF, RJH, GOJ, JMC, LH, JS, RMc, MLJ, EL (RIP)AJ,  MLJ,  SkJ, MS (RIP), LMP,  GRJP,  JF, IC, RF,  JC,  LHG, LKG, FMG, GMG,  GC, AW,  DM,  MM, PM, ML (RIP), JMC, PN, KM, JJ, MJ, AWS, HGTJ, JHWW, HJPM, MB (RIP), MD, DN, QRPTT, LTP, NVVO, PEGMW, MC, LM & JM, BM, BP, CP, PP, CH, NF, RJH, GOJ, JMC, LH, JS, RMc, MLJ, EL (RIP)SS, BK, JKBP, CP, PP, BW, HT (RIP), SL, AW, DM, MM, PM, LH, TN, SF, SC, FM, T&TT, AR, HF, RF, JM, R&B, MC, MD,BH, SGS, JJHB, SJB, BB, MD, MB,  JT,  RF,  SS,  SS,  PB,  SD,  JR,  SQ,  JL, MCSM,  PR,  MJ,  MD,  SM,  PR,  MJ,  MD, 

 

LECTIO DIVINA FOR FRIDAY OF EASTER WEEK V (15 May 2020)

Pictures received of any churches that have been significant in your faith journey will be included as the images on the daily Lectio Divina links. Send to john@fff.org.nz.

Today’s church:  The most remote New Zealand Church,  Our Lady of the Antipodes on Pitt Island in the Chatham group, 800km off the east coast of New Zealand. The church is the red roof building in the centre, taken on one of my many visits  as parish priest, from the single engine plane that lands in a paddock airfield. The alternative transport from Chatham is a couple of exciting hours on a fishing boat. The church was built by local labour and opened by Prime Minister Norman Kirk and Bishop Brian Ashby in 1972.

Friday Easter Week V (15 minutes) 

Friday Easter Week V  (25 minutes)

4 Responses to "chosen"
  1. How wonderful to have been chosen. What a gift I’ve chosen to accept. Christ wants no one to be lost. But with our freedom we get to respond to His gift of faith and we get to pray for all who are also chosen but who do not accept His love. Praise you Lord always and forever. Amen.

  2. Such an empowering reflection this morning! It made me contemplate those words which I have been familiar with for years , as though it was for the first time! What joy! My prayers for you Fr. John ….

  3. “I Chose You!” Certainly food for thought. Thank you Fr John for highlighting this.
    It was good to see the picture of Our Lady of the Antipodes, and that it was built by local labour. However the driving force behind that ambitious project was Fr John Noonan, who was Parish Priest in the 1970s during the crayfish boom years, and he certainly did his share of the building work – He had a reputation of being a “Hands On” Priest. Although I had many work trips to the Chathams, the weather stymied 2 projected fishing boat trips to Pitt Island.

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