John 3:16. Athletes have recently been putting this on their cleats, eye-black, and even getting tattoos of it. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son”. It is a very popular quote and we find it in today’s Gospel of John.
The author of John is in the middle of speaking about how history changing this event, this gift is. Those who believe in Him - those who accept this gift live in light, while those who deny this gift live in darkness. One of the most interesting lines of this passage is that when the Light comes into the world - the people preferred darkness. The people of Israel and the world had become so accustomed to living in the darkness - with war and death and destruction - that they would rather live that way than in peace and life.
We may be tempted to believe that not so much has changed in the 2000+ years since the Light entering the world. My old High School music instructor, a Franciscan named Br. Joshua, never let us listen to Billy Joel because of the one song that says “I’d rather laugh with the sinners than cry with the saints”. Of course sin still exists. People can easily live in darkness if they want to - and that’s just it - if they want to. If they prefer to. The real question for us is where do we take joy in our lives: in living in sin or in living a holy life? If we find ourselves chasing after fleeting pleasure after fleeting pleasure, all we are really doing is grasping for the Light in the darkness. But we don’t know the Light.
As Easter approaches, we are again reminded that God sent His Son into the world because He loves us and wants us to live in the Light. The Father loves us so much that He wants us to live IN His Son. Through Him and with Him and in Him - always pointing us to the joys that are not fleeting but eternal. Joys that may make us “cry with the saints” but they are tears of profound joy. They are tears of salvation in our Lord. May we pray this week for the grace to prefer Light to darkness.
May the Lord give you His peace,