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✝️REFLECTION CAPSULE – Mar 22, 2024: Friday

“Not being stone-hearted; rather having tender, loving, understanding and compassionate hearts!

(Based on Jer 20:10-13 and Jn 10:31-42 - Friday of the Fifth Week of Lent)

"We are strewn all over the ground.

Some of us are considered useless….
Some of us are just stamped upon…
Some are made use in some hard labour…

Some of us…
… well, some of us, however, are made use for some inhuman practices.

This includes making use of some of us, to hurt others
… to cause pains and wounds to others
… and some even to cause fatal deaths!

Our life is often long…
… but sometimes, such kind of painful moments and incidents, ooze out any bit of feelings we may have (though we are considered not to be having any sentiments!)

Are you wondering who we are?

… we are the family of stones!

Yep… Stones!

Strewn all over…
Sometimes useless, right?
Sometimes just stamped upon, right?
Sometimes just made use for hard labour, right?

But sometimes, some of us, the stones
… also become objects of injuring and causing pain to others

One such occasion was when, as you read in the Gospel of St John 8
… some of us were picked up by a gang of highly malicious, judgmental and selfish people, to cause death to a woman who was caught in an act of immorality.

We were ready to thrown on that woman.
We were set to become objects of brutality and terror.

However, that day, we encountered the most amazing personality.
He had glorious eyes.
He had a breath-taking voice.
He had a tremendous authority.

His name was JESUS!

And His one sentence, "He who is without sin, let him be the first to stone" dropped the jaws of all those blood-thirsty and cruel people.

We were all released from their hands.

We saw them all turning their backs and going home, in shame.
We also saw, the wonderful triumph of Mercy and Love and Compassion.

However, a few days later, some of us were soon back to find ourselves in the hands of those blood-thirsty men.

This time, the target was none other than that same charismatic person named Jesus.

You read about that in John 10:31, "The Jews took up stones again to stone Jesus"

We were left wondering why this innocent man was being targeted so badly.

He was after all preaching the Kingdom of God.

He was bringing the message of God's Love and salvation to the world.
By His works, He was also proving Himself to be the Son of God.

But none of these "clear-cut" evidences were able to convince those people.

They still believed that Jesus was a blasphemer.

And so they picked us up - yes, we the stones
… to indulge themselves in a blood-bath of the Blessed Man of claimed Himself to be the Lord and Saviour of the World!

Prophet Jeremiah also had a similar experience of being denounced by the people…
… and centuries ago, recounting his own struggle, had written these prophetic words about the Saviour: “For I hear many whispering. Terror is on every side!
‘Denounce him! Let us denounce him!’ say all my familiar friends, watching for my fall.
‘Perhaps he will be deceived, then we can overcome him, and take our revenge on him!’” (Jer 20:10)

Our thoughts go out to those people who have such ruthless and stony intentions….

God had blessed them with such beautiful hearts.
God had showered them with so much of wisdom to discern and understand.

Yet, they failed to make use of these divine gifts and instead, had hardened their hearts!

What a pity, that those human beings had become like us
… stones!

Yes, just how could they become stone-hearted?

… that they failed to be open to the possibility of God's hand at work.

Stone hearted
… that they were adamant to be closed to any explanation of the Lord.

… that they were stubborn to listen to the voice of God's Spirit in their lives.

We, the stones, now appeal to you, dear readers, to be wary and examine your lives:
Are you also sometimes acquiring a nature like us, the stones…
… hard to the feelings of other people and failing to understand them?
… rigid to the inspirations of the Spirit of God and not letting Him work in your lives?
… inflexible to have changes and transformations in life, to attune oneself to God's Will?

There are already many of us in the world…

On your streets, on your roads
… we are all, indeed strewn all over the place
… we, the stones.

But we sincerely beg you…
… not to let your hearts to become like us
… not to let your lives to be similar to our nature.

Let the world have more of, not stone-hearts…
… but tender, loving, understanding and compassionate hearts!

Let the world have more of, not hardened souls…
… but docile, open, submissive and humble lives!

God Bless! Live Jesus!