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Homily - 15th March, 2015 - 4th Sunday of Lent, B

posted 15 Mar 2015, 01:55 by St Wilfrid RC Haltwhistle   [ updated 6 Nov 2015, 00:44 by StJohns Annitsford ]
15th March, 2015 - 4th Sunday of Lent, B

H.B. & Hw.

"Yes, God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not be lost but may have eternal life." (John 3.16) This is the most quoted text in the Bible. Why? Because it says it all. It gives us our 'now'. We are loved so much by God that we have eternal life now. 

Salvation is a `now' condition. 
It is not an awaited condition, forthcoming, impending and intended. 
It is 'now'.

So salvation and life is how it is. And here we are living a half life, a twilight life, trying to pull ourselves up by our own bootstraps, like the good Pelagians we are. Pelagius, we remember, taught that people can perform good deeds and so merit heaven, without the aid of God's grace. Whereas, it is grace, all grace. No one is saved except by grace; saints, scholars, punters and pontiffs. So what is all the pushing, pulling, fasting, abstaining, self-denial and indulgence about?

Such are the manifestations of the God-life and salvation in us. These spiritual exercises and expressions issue from the grace and God-life in us.

"Fear not, I am with you", the Lord says. Whenever we are about to opt out, find excuse or settle for less, the Lord says, "Fear not, I am with you". Nothing changes We remember well the divine refrain echoing back to Moses even, "I shall be with you". (Exodus: 3.12) That's all.

Simply, I'll be with you! Moses' power is the presence of the Lord. In every religious experience in the Bible, a person comes to an experience of God and God says, simply, I shall be with you. I will do it. 

Trust me. (Richard Rohr) And that is all we need. That is all we need to know. That is all we need to believe.

God, very God, Father, Son & Spirit, God is with us. Just pause and attend to your breathing and know the life force within who is God. Be still and know that stillness is the divine tranquillity. We await the spiritual experience and it is all about us. The silence which we may bring to consciousness is the sound of the Triune God. The light that dawns is the one only universal light, God's illumination, "that enlightens all men".

We are being transformed in every moment we live in conscious loving union with God. "Because it is by grace that you have been saved, through faith; not by anything of your own, but by a gift from God; not by anything you have done, so that nobody can claim the credit. 

We are God's work of art; created in Christ Jesus to live the good life as from the beginning he had

meant us to live it." (Eph: 2.10)