The WORD in Other Words by Fr Emmanuel Menguito SVD (Philippines) for Wednesday 5th Week of Lent
What things enslave us in this modern day? One is that little gadget of a cellphone that most people hold in their hands. An alarm has been sounded about its destructive effects specifically in preventing good, healthy and free flowing communication among family members. The thing becomes more important than the person, it seems. Beware! Materialism and consumerism have for a long time been enslavers.
Research has found out “that as people become more materialistic, their sense of wellbeing and purpose is reduced.” Consumerism and materialism cause for people to compare themselves with one another in terms of how much one has accumulated from earthly goods. If one perceives that he/she has and is less he/she feels deficient and inadequate. The advertising industry feeds our insatiable desire, our needs and wants making us desirous for things that we do not really need.
Jesus in today’s gospel says, “The truth will set you free.” We need his help in order for us to really discern and see the lies in our lives that make us blind to the things that enslave us. Wrong relationships, addictions (in any form, the chemical form is just one), bad habits, etc. may be causing us sadness and loneliness. They make us feel less as persons instead of help us really enjoy life as it should be enjoyed.
Jesus will set us free if we allow him to rule over us and to have dominion over our lives. This is certainly one kind of “enslavement” that I would like to have: to be a servant to the God who made himself a servant for us by sharing in our humanity. I hope you too desire it.