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Forgiving others likens us to God





Christ is everything to us

March 22, 2023

“IF I testify on my own behalf, my testimony is not true. But there is another who testifies on my behalf, and I know that the testimony he gives on my behalf is true.” (Jn 5, 31-32)

These are words of Christ that express his effort to identify who he really is and how he is related to God and us. St. John the Baptist had already given his testimony about him, and during his baptism in the River Jordan, nothing less than a voice from heaven was heard, saying, “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” (Mt 3,17) Besides, he did so many miracles and his teachings were so sublime that one can easily conclude that Christ must be at least some special person.

We need to strengthen our belief that Christ is everything to us. He is the God-man that offers us “the way, the truth and the life” so that we can recover our dignity and ultimate identity as children of God, made in God’s image and likeness, and meant to share God’s very life and nature.

We therefore need to develop the instinct of always looking for Christ, making him alive in our life and patterning our life after his. This business of always looking for Christ is a basic duty of ours, a grave responsibility, in fact. Without him, we would just be on our own, relying simply on our own light and powers that, no matter how excellent, can never accomplish our real ultimate need of our own salvation, our own perfection as a person and as a child of God.

We need to look for Christ so we can find him, and in finding him, we can start to love and serve him which is what we are expected to do to be ‘another Christ’ as we ought. This has basis on what Christ himself said: “Ask and it will be given to you. Seek and you will find. Knock and the door will be opened to you…” (Mt 7,7)

And finding him means that we make Christ alive in our life. He is not just a historical figure. Let’s remember that before he went up to heaven, he promised the coming of the Holy Spirit who would bring to us everything that Christ did and said. More than that, the Holy Spirit brings Christ alive in us.

We just have to remember that with Christ, it is not enough to know him. We also have to love him. With Christ, to know him truly is to love him also. In fact, we cannot say we really know him unless we love him too.

With him, these two spiritual operations of ours merge into a unity, although they have different directions. In knowing, the object known is in the knower. It has an inward movement. The knower possesses the known object.

In loving, the lover is in the beloved. It has an outward movement. It is the beloved that possesses the lover. The lover gets identified with the beloved. The lover becomes what he loves. When we love Christ, we are with him, and become one with him.

For this, we need to exercise our faith to the hilt. When we exercise our faith, we enter into a reality that goes beyond what we simply can see and touch and understand. With faith we can have hope in pursuing our ultimate goal of becoming like Christ. With faith we can manage to live the highest virtue, which is charity, with God as its object and others as its unavoidable co-object.