Phyllis GillSister Phyllis Gill
Friday of the Second Week of Lent

In the reading today we hear the first part of the Old Testament story of Joseph who was sold by his brothers because of their jealousy.  We know the rest of the story:  that after many years of grief and suffering on both sides, Joseph was raised up to a position of authority and then able to help save his father and brothers from famine and be reunited to them in forgiveness.

In the Gospel we hear the parable of the tenants who killed the owners servants and son being rejected and the land given to new tenants.  Jesus then says:  “The stone which the builders rejected will become the cornerstone.”

As I reflect on the above, I remember hearing the adage that “good can come from anything”.  I am also reminded of what St. Paul says in Romans 8:28 “We know that all things work for good for those who love God”, and that Jesus said “a seed must die to bring forth new life”.  In the midst of suffering, whether it is pain, grief, guilt, shame or anger, it is difficult to see how any good can come from the incident that caused it.  I do not believe that it means that the incident needed to happen or that God wanted or caused it, but I do believe that believing the above can give us hope in the midst of despair.  We do not know the future or why things happen the way they do but we do know that God is with us and loves us and good can eventually evolve out of the chaos. 

I suggest that you reflect on “bad” things that have happened to you in the past and having some distance from the event see if you can now see what good came out of it.  May it give you hope and faith in the Pascal Mystery:  that from death comes resurrection!