Thursday of the 23rd week in ordinary time year A

Numbers 21:4b-9           Philippians 2:6-11    John 3:13-17

Theme: On the cross is our salvation

Today the church celebrates the Exaltation of the Cross, a feast. The death of Jesus Christ on the cross, gave a new meaning to the cross. This new meaning is symbolic, as seen in the love of God for his people, not minding the fact that they strayed in the 1st reading of today from the Book of Numbers. All those who were bitten by the serpent and look up on the bronze serpent, would live. In the same way, all those who trust in God and look up to the cross with faith, will experience the power and mercy of God. The triumph of the cross is eternal and very active in our own time. It was on the cross that Jesus won us salvation, and in the cross is our peace and victory as children of God. A very important question today is, do you believe in the Triumph of the cross of Christ, and the power therein? Let us live our lives appreciating the love of God for humanity that led him to the cross.

In the 2nd reading from St. Paul’s letter to the Philippians, he points out the humble nature of Christ, who accepted to die on the cross, for our salvation. He decided to walk through that difficult path for our redemption and changed the narrative of the cross. The action of Jesus gave a new meaning and understanding to the cross. In view of this, we must understand that the cross gave us back our lives, with the help of Jesus Christ. The humility of Jesus to accept the path of the cross is worthy of emulation. Taking into consideration the fact that most of us will not easily accept such challenges and difficulties when they come to us.

On a day like this, we pray for the grace to accept the crosses that come to us in life, trusting in the victory and triumph that Christ won for us on the cross. When we are faced with the challenges and storms of life, let us look up to the cross of Christ in faith. Just like all those bitten by the fiery serpent looked up to the bronze serpent and lived. The cross of Christ is our victory. All we need is to have faith in God and trust in it, and we will not be disappointed. May the Triumph of the cross continue to strengthen us in times of difficulties in the name of the father and of the son and of the holy spirit. Amen. Peace be with you.

Triumph of the cross (Feast), by Fr. Jude Ifeanyi Ifezime, C.S.Sp