Thursday, May 28 - Seventh Week of Easter
from the "Little White Book"
Judas, not the Iscariot, said to Him, "Master, [then] what happened that You will reveal Yourself to us and not to the world?" Jesus answered and said to him, "Whoever loves Me will keep My word, and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make our dwelling with him. Whoever does not love Me does not keep My words; yet the word you hear is not mine but that of the Father who sent Me." - John 14:22-24
'Jude the Apostle'
Jude (also knows as Thaddeus) was thought to be a cousin of Jesus.
His father was said to be the martyr Cleophas, a brother of St. Joseph. His mother Mary stood at the foot of the cross when Jesus died. His brothers were thought to be St. Simon and St. James the Lesser, and all three brothers were among the 12 apostles.
After the death and resurrection of Jesus, Jude is said to have preached in Samaria, Syria, Mesopotamia, and Libya. He is credited with writing an epistle to the Churches of the East, intended specifically for Jewish converts who were confronted by ongoing heresies. The letter encourages them to persevere in their new faith despite the difficult circumstances they were facing. Jude is said to have been martyred in Armenia.
The feast of St. Jude is October 28, and he is the patron saint of hopeless causes. Why is St. Jude the patron of desperate situations? One explanation is that his letter speaks of perseverance in the face of difficulties. Another possibility is that Jude was often confused with Judas Iscariot, therefore, praying to Jude was considered a "lost cause," and one prayed to St. Jude only as the last resort.
Then Jesus approached and said to the disciples, "All power in heaven and on earth has been given to Me." - Matthew 28:18
Note that Jesus came to the disciples ("approached").
Only one other recorded time - at the end of the Transfiguration - does He "approach" the three disciples.
In both instances, Jesus is in glory.
Before the glorified Lord, we humans can only bow low and keep our distance. Jesus bridges that distance by drawing near and speaking His words of comfort and compassion.
Sometimes, we may think of Jesus ascending into heaven as though He left us - sort of like going into retirement.
But Jesus promised the disciples at the Last Supper, "I'm going away and I'm coming back to You."
He wasn't talking about coming back at the end of the world. He was talking about coming back after He had gone through death to the other side, rose from the dead, ascended to heaven, and send His own Spirit to be with us and within us.
That is a beautiful thing.
Jesus is able to approach us and be within us, closer than He could be with the disciples as they traveled together during His ministry.
Jesus is definitely not "retired."
Spend some quiet time with the Lord
Further thoughts for Lenten reflection: