Reflection for Sunday, November 21, 2021: Our Lord Jesus Christ The King, Solemnity.
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|For this I was born and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.|"I was born … to testify to the truth!" Talk about a powerful personal mission statement! This one might be at the very top of the list.|Billy Joel summed up the importance of being truthful in the lyrics to his 1978 song, Honesty.|But if you look for truthfulness|You might just as well be blind|It always seems to be so hard to give|Honesty is such a lonely word|Everyone is so untrue|Honesty is hardly ever heard|And mostly what I need from you|Honesty|According to researchers, the average American lies 11 times a week, and this assumes the people they polled were telling the truth during the survey.|Some researchers say many of us lie because telling the truth can put us in awkward, uncomfortable situations, the type we as humans are wired to try and avoid. And then there is the group of us who lie to look good. What is wrong with telling a few white lies? Researchers claim "social lying" is often about appearances, looking good not only to our friends, but— get this – also to ourselves. By being untruthful, we are all too often willing to hide our failures and shortcomings or nod in agreement with opinions to which we do not subscribe.|So, why did Jesus respond to Pilate's inquiry the way he did and emphasize the importance of honesty? If we think about it, being truthful goes hand in hand with Jesus' message of love; first, to love your God above all others, and then, to love your neighbor. For truth is the very cornerstone upon which love is built, and without truth, no relationship, here on earth or in heaven, can survive.|God knows all and sees all, so our untruthfulness is only for our own presumed benefit. |Today, as we talk to God, let's focus on being truthful in assessing how we are trying to live our faith-filled lives. Let's not exaggerate our good deeds, omit our failings, or worry about being liked by others, but rather, learn to "testify to the truth" and in so doing, be more open and accepting of God's unconditional love.|Over time, the added benefit of being truthful with God in all our daily conversations and prayers may be our increased comfort to "testify to the truth" with those we love and with whom we share our lives; to openly share with them our candid thoughts and feelings; and to welcome theirs as well. By practicing truthfulness and honesty in our prayer life and then with our loved ones, we may gain the confidence to rewrite our own personal mission statement and vow to "testify to the truth" to all we meet.
University Ministry, Creighton University.
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