WHEN YOU ARE being persecuted especially by your supposed best friends and relations,  you do not have to curse them but forgive them like Jesus did on the cross on that Good Friday, “Father, forgive them for they know not what they are doing.” It is difficult to do this but God has given us the grace to forgive those who hurt us. Here is a testimony from Edo State.

Omono got married for 22 years before she became pregnant and the pregnancy lasted 4 years before she was delivered of the baby.  During her trying period, she was abandoned by her relations and friends because of her resolve to hang on to her husband; Okoh whom they thought was impotent. Her husband was also rejected by his people for his refusal to marry another woman who would give him children to inherit his wealth.

This development made them to unite with each other more than ever before as they resolved to wait on God who joined them together as husband and wife. So, they were alone in the midst of many who mocked them at will because of their bareness. Sometimes, God answers our prayer almost immediately. Other times, he seems to delay or refuse to answer us. Jesus assured us in Lk 18:7 that God will do justice for his chosen ones who cry to him day and night even if he delays in answering their prayer. So, pray with hope and without ceasing!

When God eventually gave them the first baby of the family, the same people who made caricature of them during their tribulations came to celebrate this breakthrough with them. That was about eight years ago. The Psalmist said, “When the Lord delivered Zion from bondage, it seems like a dream.”

Omono now has three children (ages eight to one year-old) to the glory of God who is ever ready to rescue the weak and oppressed. If you worry because of what people will say rather than what God has said or would say, you are very likely to go against the will of God for you. “Those who put their trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion that cannot be shaken, that stands forever” Ps 125:1.

One of the last temptations Jesus faced even while on the cross was; “If you are the Son of God, save yourself and come down from the cross” Mtt 27: 40. Jesus had proved this so many times in many ways, yet, the people did not seem to believe him. “O men, how long will your hearts be closed; will you love what is futile and seek what is false?” Ps 4:2. He was disappointed that even, Judas had to betray him, Peter had to deny ever knowing him, many kept a long distance from him and when the thief testified that he was innocent and begged Jesus to remember him, Jesus responded in his favor.

Jesus had already prayed, for the second time, “ Father, if this cup cannot be taken away from me without my drinking it, let your will be done.” Mtt. 26:42. When you accept to do God’s will for you, imitate Christ and ignore all distractions and God’s grace will sustain you.

 Give me the grace to follow,

 Abundant grace to follow,

 Give me the grace to follow,

 Your grace is enough for me.

 Because God loves us, he gave us his Son out of mercy. Also in his mercy, he initiated the sacrament of forgiveness saying “If you forgive anyone …..” These are some of the reasons why Pope Paul 11 called today, Divine Mercy Sunday because love begets mercy. Love one another as I have loved you and by this people will know that you are children of God.

“Jesus on the cross feels the whole weight of the evil, and with the force of God’s love He conquers it: He defeats it with His resurrection. This is the good that Jesus does for us on the throne of the cross. Christ’s cross, embraced with love, never leads to sadness, but to joy, to the joy of having been saved and of doing a little of what He did on the day of His death.” Pope Francis.

Jesus’ resurrection has increased our hope that God in his mercy will destroy everything in us that is at enmity with God. Jesus was obedient to the Father up to the point of dying on the cross to save us. We too should endeavor to be obedient to him so that we can be where he is. “If any one serves me, he must follow me; and where I am, there shall my servant be also; if any one serves me, the Father will honor him.” Jn 12:26. 

Because of Jesus’ resurrection, we are now Alleluia people. Praise the Living Jesus! Alleluia! As a follower of Christ, be steadfast in your tribulation because you have Jesus!

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