A time to reflect on our attitude towards others
Last Sunday we celebrated Palm Sunday which marked the beginning of the Holy Week in our Church calendar. As we step into this auspicious week, it may be the right time for us to reflect on and adopt the virtues that Jesus demonstrated during his triumphant entry into Jerusalem, the washing of the feet and the subsequent Passion and death on the cross.
The triumphant entry into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday indicates the willingness of Jesus to stand up for the truth despite knowing well that it is going to cost Him his life. Almost every day we too are faced with situations where we have to stand up in defense of truth. It will be extremely difficult for us do so especially if the person whom we have to stand up against is our superior or those in positions of power and influence. Equally or even more difficult it is if the person whom you love most is doing wrong.
The washing of the feet of his apostles on Holy Thursday was an act of extreme humility that Jesus wants us to emulate in our own lives. “If I, then, the Lord and Master, have washed your feet, you must wash each other's feet”(John13:14). How willing are we to wash the feet of others, especially those under our care and less fortunate than us?
On Good Friday we commemorate the Passion of Christ that led to his crucifixion. In His Passion and death he demonstrated his forgiveness towards even those who insulted and persecuted him in the cruelest form. Instead of retaliating with anger and vengeance he reacted with love and forgiveness as he hung on the cross dying saying, “Father, forgive them; they do not know what they are doing”(Luke 23:34).
Jesus accepted all the persecution and humiliation of his Passion willingly without anger and hatred for those who inflicted pain and insult on him.
None of us may be able to do what Jesus did but the least we can do is to reflect on ourselves to see how we compare to him. Do we harbor hatred and anger against those who have hurt us? Are we willing to forgive those who have hurt us? Are we willing to go out of the way to seek forgiveness from those we have hurt?
Today one of the main sickness in society is apathy. We may be too busy with our work and trying make ends meet. We may be too busy to earn to support our family as the cost of living has escalated to levels beyond our reach. In this process we tend to forget those less fortunate than us. We become devoid of feelings for others who may in pain and agony. They may not need money but just our time, our smile and some comforting words which we find hard to give.
Then there are those who are treated unjustly in our midst, our colleagues and subordinates. They are overworked, underpaid and rights denied and even abused. We may be in a position to do or at least say something in their support but we are too afraid and remain silent.
The Holy Week is a time to reflect on our attitude towards others. It is a time to think of others who are less fortunate than us, to feel for them and do something within our means to support them in whatever way we can.
The Holy Week culminates in the resurrection of Jesus that symbolizes his victory over death and sin, His resurrection gives us hope that if we continue to do his will and suffer as a result we too will one day come out victorious over our own sins and death.
Have a Holy and Blessed Holy Week