Receive the Son

Fifth Saturday of Lent

Therese Mills – DOJ Canberra

There is a story about a wealthy man and his son. They shared a passion for art and travelled the world collecting the finest artwork to add to their collection. The young son left for war to serve for his country. After a few short weeks, his father received a telegram to say his son had died.

One day the father received a knock at the door. He was greeted by a soldier “I was a friend of your son. I was the one he was rescuing when he died. I’m an artist and I want to give you this, he saved my life.” As the old man unwrapped the package, the paper gave way to reveal a beautiful portrait of the son.  That painting became the fathers prized possession which he proudly displayed in the main room.

A few years down the track the man became ill and passed away.  The art world waited in anticipation for the old man’s art to be auctioned. The first painting to be auctioned was the portrait of the man’s son.  The auctioneer asked for an opening bid. The room was silent. Finally, a man spoke from the back of the room “Will you take ten dollars for the painting? That’s all I have.”  After more silence, the auctioneer said, “Going once, going twice. Gone.” With that the auctioneer looked at the audience and announced the auction was over.

Stunned disbelief quietened the room, then an uproar arose! The auctioneer replied, “It’s very simple. According to the will of the father, whoever takes the son…gets it all.”

In today’s Gospel we see the division between the Pharisees and those who believed in Jesus. The Pharisees wanted Jesus dead for his blasphemy, while Caiaphas knew the role Jesus played as the sacrificial lamb, chosen to die for our sins. To believe in Jesus, is to make a choice for the fullness of life. 

When you receive my son, you get everything. This is God the Fathers promises to us.  As we enter holy week let us examine our own hearts – is my heart ready to accept and receive this sacrificial love? Do I fully recognise the gift that God is offering me? 

Lord Jesus, as I draw closer to you in your passion, prepare my heart. Help me to discover more deeply the sacrifice that you underwent for me. Help me Jesus to accept you fully so I can receive ALL that you have to offer.

Today’s Scripture

Reading: Ezekiel 37:21-28

Gospel: John 11:45-56