Today's Gospel: John 3:16-21
I have had John 3:16 memorized since I was a very young girl. “For God so loved the world…” Every time I have read those words I have felt the enormity of God’s love for humanity. God sent His only Son to take on our form, to love us, to touch us, to heal us, and to die for us. God gave up His Son, Christ gave up Himself, so that we could have eternal life with Him. We were separated from Him by our sin, but today’s gospel assures us that He didn’t come to us to condemn us for our sins, but to save us from them. That’s the first part of this gospel reading.
The second part of the gospel reveals us to be the ones that condemn ourselves. Christ is the light that came into our dark world, and this passage tells us that there are those who choose to walk in His light and those who choose the darkness instead. If we love our darkness, then we will not choose the light. His light, His goodness, reveals what we love. It makes clear what we might otherwise prefer hidden. The presence of Christ, like the presence of a lamp in a dark room, illuminates what is inside our hearts.
God is love, and in love He came down to us. We have the opportunity to respond to His loving invitation to walk in the light and live eternal life. Will we choose salvation? Will we love our Savior in return? Christ has clearly said that it is His desire to save us, not condemn us. But He cannot be other than He is: the Light. Will we choose the light and leave our darkness behind? He would have us with all of His heart; but He cannot have our sin, for there is no darkness in Him.
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Is there some darkness preventing you from coming into the Light, something that you love more than the Savior who loves you?
Lord Jesus, I step into your light. I desire to live for You and invite the light of Your love to expel my innermost darkness today.
Copyright 2020 Jessica Ptomey
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About the Author
Jessica Ptomey is a Catholic convert, wife, mom, writer, communications scholar and professor, and homeschooler. She blogs at JessicaPtomey.com. She is the author of Home in the Church: Living an Embodied Catholic Faith, and her research in inter-faith dialogue has been published in the Journal of Communication and Religion (JCR). She is also the co-host, with her husband Mike, of The Catholic Reading Challenge podcast.