Homily of the Day

Friday of the Fourth Week of Lent

Our Lord’s time of suffering and death had been planned by God. Jesus will suffer and die at the “appointed time.” God’s plan cannot be changed by men. The enemies of Jesus could not “lay a finger on him,” could not arrest him unless he allowed them to. Jesus will suffer at the time set by God his Father. God is all-powerful. No man can frustrate or change God’s plan. However, Our Lord cooperates with God’s plan. His relatives go to the Jewish festival of Booths. Jesus does not join them. Scripture narrates: “… he too went but as if in secret and not for all to see.”

In the Gospels, in certain miracles he performed, Jesus cautioned those cured not to publicize the cures so as to avoid inciting his enemies to take action against him before the scheduled time of his suffering. Jesus gives us an example of cooperating with God’s plan.

God is our Father. He loves us. He takes care of us. At the same time, has given us a mind and abilities to cooperate, in our human way, with care for us. He wants us to do what is in our power to cooperate with him. For example, we pray that God will give good health. So, we have to choose well the food we eat. We practice moderation in food and drink. In modern times, it is generally recommended to have regular physical exercise to enjoy good health. For our spiritual health we pray to God to help us avoid sin and to do good. This means we should avoid the occasions of sin. These occasions of sin may be persons or things, which could lead us to strong temptations and sin. They also could be places where most people usually fall into serious sin. Our cooperation with God’s care and protection requires that we avoid these occasions of sin.

God helps those who help themselves. While praying for and trusting in God’s protection, we do our part to avoid sin and do good to others. When we ask God to help us do good to others, we must look for and create the opportunities for doing good.