Gain and Loss

Although we came into this world with nothing and we are leaving this world with nothing, part of our humanity is that we experience grief when we experience loss. While material loss is difficult, more painful is a loss of a loved one. For those who are about 50 years old and above, going to wakes and funerals is already part of our social calendar. We console and comfort family, friends, and colleagues who are experiencing death in their family.

In the Gospel today, the disciples themselves experience loss – Jesus was saying goodbye to them. How does Jesus comfort his disciples?

  1. Jesus is going to the one who sent Him. In other words, Jesus is going home. Jesus reminds us that there is life eternal. That we are only passing in this life. 
  2. The Advocate will come. While the mission of Jesus is done, we are never alone. The Holy Spirit is with us. How true is the promise of God, “I will never leave you and I will never forsake you.”
  3. Always be Hopeful. With everything that is happening in the world today, we ask ourselves where is God? Why does evil seem to prevail over good? Jesus assures His followers that the ruler of this world has been convicted.  Devil and his legions may be active but it is only because they know that their end is near.

Hence, in every Mass, 

  • We realize that loss and grief are part of life. Especially when it comes to the people most dear to us, we will never really get over it but we will just live with it. In one of the Gospel readings, God was St. Paul’s consolation when he was in grief.
  • God is good. While we deal with losses in life, there is something to gain eventually. As the saying goes, “When a door is closed, another is opened.”
  • Grief is typically unspent love. Hence never take for granted relationships. We do not know how much time we are given.

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