Fourth Thursday of Lent

Readings: Ex 32: 7-14 / Ps 106: 19-23 / Jn 5: 31-47

God has a plan. How often I use this phrase in my everyday life! The thought gives me solace when my life is in a state of upheaval or when I have difficulty understanding why things happen. In our professional and personal lives, we often experience times when things do not follow our plan. We plan our careers, we plan our families, we plan our retirements and when something happens that does not fit, we are confused and frightened.

God has a plan. I have been meditating on this phrase for many years, yet still I fail on a regular basis to remember that I have, at the very best, a limited understanding of God’s plans. I believe that God’s plans for me are wonderful, yet if they do not match what I have envisioned myself, I fear them or often miss them altogether. The first reading describes the Israelites worshiping the golden calf, mistakenly thinking it could be worshipped as the God who brought them out of Egypt. How often I mistake things and people in this world as worthy of worship. How often I miss the best things God has in store for me because they do not look like what I expect.

In the Gospel of John, although we know that everything happened according to God’s plan, still it is difficult to accept that the plan was for the Jews to reject Jesus’ teachings, and ultimately crucify Him. Yet it was crucial that this would take place. God has a plan.

As we continue to travel through Lent, preparing once again for Easter, we might look to today’s responsorial psalm, and join in with our companions on the journey and ask God to remember us as we struggle to remember God has a plan.

Susan Leighton
Office of the Provost Operations