January 31, 2018

The Holy Wonderworkers and Unmercenaries Cyrus and John (284-305)

1 John 3:21-4:6; Mark 14:43-15:1

Christ is born! Glorify Him!

It is not easy to be a faithful follower and disciple of the Lord. We see that of the twelve one betrayed him, one denied him and the rest abandoned him. The timing of today’s reading is appropriate as Judas Iscariot’s betrayal began on a Wednesday. It is for this reason that Wednesday is considered a somber day, a traditional day of fasting and a time of reflection on where each of us may be betraying the Lord. No one wants to be labeled Judas, but we all fail. This is a day when we should reflect on whether our conscience calls us out when we try to fit at the cost of betraying the Gospel values. Or if we put our selves first for the sake of gain, like Judas, at the expense of the people around us. Whether it is a betrayal of faith, conscience or our neighbour for the sake of worldly riches and the fleeting daily rush of power and dominance we can find some way to identify with Judas Iscariot.

The Lord knows that we are weak and that betrayal, denial and abandonment can happen, but how we deal with it is what makes the difference between Judas—condemnation— and Peter—salvation. Judas betrayed the Lord, but never repented and asked for forgiveness. While Peter denied the Lord, wept bitterly, repented and for this reason was restored. His repentance and restoration led him to growth and a deeper level of faith and love for the Lord. In other words, Peter’s repentance opened him to a greater level of blessing. The Lord desires to bless us, but we just have to make ourselves blessable.

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