FOURTH SUNDAY OF LENT, YEAR A
March 22, 2020
1 Samuel 16:1b,6-7,10-13a; Ephesians 5:8-14; John 9:1-41.
Today’s readings emphasise the difference between how God perceives us and how we perceive ourselves. The countenance of God sheds its light upon our sinful state in order to reveal our beautiful souls and illumine our paths towards good. According to the second reading from Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, anything exposed by the light will be illuminated and anything illuminated turns into light. God sees beyond the physical appearance; He sees the soul.
The first reading from the First Book of Samuel, the prophet Samuel was sent to Jesse of Bethlehem to anoint one of his sons chosen as the new King of Israel. God’s choice of young and inexperienced David is a demonstration that God illumines our hearts towards Himself. The purity of our hearts pleases God. David is described as a boy of fresh complexion, with fine eyes and pleasant bearing. The insignificant son of Jesse is chosen to be king. Samuel anointed David and the spirit of the Lord seized on Him and stayed with him from that day on.
In the gospel according to John, Jesus Christ saw a man born blind, while his disciples and the Pharisees saw a sinner from birth, who is beyond redemption. Jesus Christ casts the light of his gaze on the blind man perceived by the Pharisees as ‘sinfulness beyond redemption’ and restored his sight and he believed in him.
Jesus Christ will gaze on us in similar manner this Lenten season. The world may disregard us but God appreciates us. Because the light of his transforming gaze will blot out the darkness of sin that holds sway of our lives. He will reveal the beauty that lies in our hearts for we shall walk in his light. Jesus Christ is the light of the world, anyone who follows him will have the light of life. (John 8:12) Our concentration should always be on how God perceives us. We can be assured that the light of his countenance will reveal the beauty of our souls and our paths illumined towards him.
Fr Anthony Ekpunobi, CM.