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Wednesday of Holy Week

March 19, 2008

Blessed Spy Wednesday!

Spy Wednesday is a popular term, not a liturgical one, yet it describes Judas’ new position among the disciples. Today he becomes a spy among the Twelve, an informer for the enemy, waiting for the opportune moment to hand over his Lord to condemnation and death.

Father, in Your plan of salvation
Your Son Jesus Christ accepted the cross
and freed us from the power of the enemy.
May we come to share the glory of His resurrection,
for He lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
(Opening Prayer for today’s Mass)

Isaiah 50:4-9 (God’s Suffering Servant will not be deterred)
Psalm 69:8-10, 21-22, 31, 33-34 “Lord, in Your great love, answer me.”
+Matthew 26:14-25 (Judas’ first betrayal and Jesus’ subtle invitation to repentance)

“Amen I say to you, one of you is about to betray Me”

“Is it I, Lord?” (Matthew 26:21-22)

Is it I, Lord?

I have not only dipped my hand in the dish with You, not only felt Your humble hands bathe my soiled feet as You forgave my sins, I have consumed You, Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity.

I dare not trust myself. If the faithful Apostles could ask sorrowfully, “Is it I, Lord?”, if St. Peter himself could be frightened into denying You, then who am I to suppose that I will stand strong in the hour of temptation?

Am I, like Judas, up for sale? Would I turn against You for thirty pieces of silver? For my job? My house? My family? …or just for the sake of not making a scene? Will I simply disregard You for the sake of tending to my own affairs today?

I’m awestruck by Your courage, by Your constancy. Morning after morning You speak God’s Word to me, whether I listen or not. Despite all my little rebellions, You never turn back, never give up on me. You give Your back to those who beat You, Your cheeks to those who pluck Your beard. Your face, set like flint, You do not shield from buffets and spitting (see Isaiah 50:4-7), nor from my impatience and disapproval.

I’m not like that. My love is not that strong, nor my heart that courageous.

My God, how good You are to give me Your own Love!…to come to live within me (see John 14:23) that I may live Your life in this world (Galatians 2:20), equipped with Your own divine Wisdom, Understanding, Knowledge, Counsel, Fortitude, Piety and Fear of the Lord (see Isaiah 11:2). Teach me, inspire me, to live this supernatural life, to put these gifts into practise. Protect me from my own weakness, defensiveness and self-seeking. You have already purchased me, and at what a price! (see I Peter 1:19, I Corinthians 6:20, 7:23) I am not my own. I belong to You.

But, to my sorrow, I will most likely betray You anyway.

Give me St. Peter’s humility, that I may not only deeply regret my failures (Judas did that), but bring them trustingly to Your mercy.

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