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Recognizing The Tenderness Of God

Most of us remember scenes such as when an important and loved politician visits a town or a village! Crowds gather easily whether invited or not and there is singing, clapping and shouts of joy as everybody wants to have a glimpse of the person. The crowd behaves in all sorts of manner in order to acknowledge or welcome their beloved and tender political leader. Palm Sunday can give us a similar picture.

 Palm Sunday; is also called Passion Sunday. It is the beginning of Holy Week. We gather to experience the tenderness of our humble King Jesus who rides on a donkey; entering Jerusalem where he will celebrate the Passover and thereafter meet his passion leading to his death.

We gather to receive Him as we raise our palms singing with Joy. Perhaps this time has found us unprepared, perhaps the period of Lent has gone by without our awareness. This is could be as a result of many life challenges we faced during this period; sickness, anxieties of some kind, death of loved ones or our busy schedules.

However, Jesus receives us lovingly and tenderly. He carries each one by name, face, and heart and more importantly,  he knows our areas of struggle with sin. We are called to recognize the tenderness of God in order to possess the same virtue and give to others.

Holy Week is a special moment for us to draw our attention to our King who invites us to follow Him in humility recognizing his love and tenderness even amidst His intense suffering and the weight of  the cross.   He invites us to ponder and draw close to his gentle heart (Mt. 11:28), “Take my Yoke and upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart… ”

A similar invitation also is found in our Constitutions paragraph 18, “Jesus calls us to a personal encounter with Him. He wants to make known to us the feelings and the preference of His Heart.”

Therefore as we reflect on Holy Week inviting Jesus at the centre of our spiritual journey, it may be helpful to ask ourselves questions such as, Do I relate with Jesus’ tender love for me? What is the place of the cross in my life? Do I feel forgiven and loved tenderly? Where is my place in the Heart of Christ? What blocks me from reaching the Heart of Christ and his triumphant cross in my life? Whose yoke do I carry? Do I recognize the tenderness of God?

I conclude this reflection with the beginning of Psalm 92 praising God for his continuous tender love for us especially as we ponder his passion during Holy Week.

It is good to give thanks to You,
O Beloved,
to sing praises to your Holy Name,
To affirm your steadfast love
in the morning,
and your faithfulness through
the night
To the music of the spheres,
To the melody of the universe!
For You, Heart of my heart, gladden
my soul,
as I proclaim with joy the harmony
and beauty of creation.
by Lucy Toror

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