He Wants To Reign In You

Dear Brothers and Sisters,
Pilate responds to Jesus after the end of today’s gospel, what is truth? He is a cynical man but somehow, he believes that he has met the truth. And the first thing that comes into his mind is that at Passover one person can be set free and he think he is able to save Jesus in this way. His plan doesn’t work so he makes sure that a sign is placed on the cross that this man is King of the Jews.
What is the mission of a king? He protects his people, defends them against the neighboring nations and makes them secure. Ultimately, a good king would give his life for his subjects. So, if your debts are mounting as inflation is rising, or the rents or mortgages are through the roof, are you totally at peace? If this is true, then Christ is your king. But if you are like me and feeling anxious about your life, where do you go to feel secure? Do you go to a friend, or watch Netflix for an hour or so, or something worse, then Christ is not your king? If he is your king, why do you drink so much, or why do you constantly judge the other? To see that Christ is really not your king is a great grace. Ask him to start to reign in you.
What touched me a lot about the gospel is where this encounter with Christ takes place. Do you know where it is? They are in the house of Pilate, in the Praetorium, an impure place for a Jew. If Jesus enters there, he is immediately considered impure and would need to be cleansed. But Jesus enters this place to reign there and bring his peace. Do you and I have a praetorium that no one knows and where we go to find peace? Jesus is not afraid to enter it out of love for you, as he did for Pilate who was touched by the truth. Christ wants to reign from your praetorium. He enters the lowest place, the dirtiest to love you there! Not for any other reason.
If you go to the bishop’s residence often you see paintings of former bishops and they are very well done with beautiful frames, some larger than others, well placed on the staircase. But you would never see the painting of a bishop in his coffin, right? What is the picture that Jesus leaves for us? He is dead on the cross, which is his throne. He is crowned. At some point he had a purple cloth over his shoulders. The cross is the essence of his life; this is where he reigns because of love for you. He is on the cross because of your sins and mine. How marvelous how he draws good from evil. All of our sins have been turned into something so marvelous. Only Christ can do such a work.
There is a story about a rich man who invites Jesus to his house and he gives him the best of the rooms all prepared for him. At midnight there is a knock at the door and a demon tries to enter the house. The owner fights him off for twenty minutes and finally closes the door. The next night it is even worse. There are many devils trying to enter the house and the man spends several hours fighting against them. The next morning he says, Lord, what is going on? I bring you to my house and now I have all these demons attacking. Can’t you do something? Jesus says, my friend, I have only power over the room that you gave me. I have no authority over anything else. The owner realizes his mistake and says, Lord, you are master of the whole house. The next day there is a knock at the door and Jesus opens it. It is Satan who when he sees Jesus says, I think I have the wrong address. What is the point of this story? God wants to be king of your whole life, not just your Sundays. He wants to be king of your thoughts, your actions, your dreams, your bedroom, your work. He wants to reign over all for love of you.
Hopefully today we can say to the Lord: I want you to start to reign in my life. I give you permission. He cannot reign until you acknowledge your sins and allow him to enter. He always goes to look for the one who is lost and puts him or her on his shoulders. If you see he is not your king today, one day he will be. Enter Advent this year with the certainty that he will reign in our life.

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