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Falls to the ground and dies

 

Gospel • Jn 12:24-26

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rff reflections today

Only when a seed is planted in the ground can it germinate, extend its roots, start its growth process, and eventually bear fruit. A seed achieves its full potential when it is taken out of the bag or bottle and buried in the ground. Jesus uses the seed to explain to his disciples the necessity of dying to one’s personal and selfish agenda. Instead, Jesus offers us his agenda of “hating one’s own life.”

To hate one’s life must not be misconstrued as contempt for oneself or as suicidal impulse. It is Jesus’ way of inviting us to base our priorities on what is outside ourselves. We are to put others or another person above ourselves. Here, Jesus is inviting us to make him our Master. He is presenting himself as the pattern of a life poured out for others.

“How few there are, Lord, who wish to follow you, and yet there is not one who does not want to reach you… All men therefore wish to enjoy you, but not to the extent of following your example; they will reign with you but not suffer with you” (St. Bernard of Clairvaux).

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Jesus said to his disciples: “Amen, amen, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains just a grain of wheat; but if it dies, it produces much fruit.

Whoever loves his life loses it, and whoever hates his life in this world will preserve it for eternal life. Whoever serves me must follow me, and where I am, there also will my servant be. The Father will honor whoever serves me.”

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SOURCE: “365 Days with the Lord 2020,” ST. PAULS Philippines, 7708 St. Paul Rd., SAV, Makati City (Phils.); Tel.: 895-9701; Fax 895-7328; E-mail: books@stpauls.ph; Website: http://www.stpauls.ph.

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