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Reflection for the fourth Sunday of Lent 2024.

The depth of God’s love for usJohn 3:16

First Reading – 2 Chronicles 36:14-16, 19-23 Responsorial Psalm – Psalm 137 Second Reading – Ephesians 2:4-10

Gospel – John 3:14-21

This Sunday’s reflection is by,

Esther Wangari,

Programmes Coordinator,

Jesuit Justice and Ecology Network Africa (JENA)

I grew up in a broken family. Unlike most of my peers, I do not have the best memories of my childhood. My parents fought so many times. I was only 15, when our house (the only home I had known) was burnt down – and by people I considered family. Out into a dark world, and with nothing. Life changed drastically.  I literally hated my life. But somehow, this was the very first time that I had gotten closer to God. It always does feel like, when we have nothing else to hold on to – we look up to God, no? But when all is going well, why then do we forget Him?

Hebrews 12:2 did remind me to fix my eyes on Jesus, who is the author and perfecter of our faith. John 3:16 reminded me that God loved me. The God that created me, had great plans for me. If He loves me so much, doesn’t that mean that He was going to fight for me? God is our maker. He is all-knowing and as believers, it does not always mean that life is going to be easy, but it means that it’s going to be worth it.

The Bible verse that people memorize the most is John 3:16 which is part of today’s gospel reading. We sang and recited about how amazing God’s love is during Sunday School. Was I merely taking in the routine, the melodies of the songs, and the company of other kids, or did I really understand what that verse meant?

For God so loved the world, that He gave His one and only Son that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16). How do we measure a love like that? God loves the world. You and me. He truly loves us as we are, with full knowledge of our shortcomings. We must accept God’s love for us as our ultimate source of forgiveness, hope, guidance in life, and eternal life—beyond just an intellectual agreement.

By Jesus’ death on the cross, the penalty for our sins were paid, and by His resurrection to life, our own resurrection was proclaimed. God’s entire plan of salvation would be impossible without His death and sacrifice. Through faith in His shed blood, which leads to repentance and baptism, we are, symbolically, given access to the tree of life.

Our belief in Him makes all the difference.

I invite us all to reflect on the depth of God’s love for us. Will John 3:16 continue to be just a slogan? Or will we allow its true message to sink deep into our mind and allow it to change how we live in our life? Because of God’s incredible love and the sacrifice of His Son, we can believe in Him. If we stay faithful and committed to that way of life, we will not perish. We will live forever in the eternal family of God.


Dear God, we thank You for Your love—a love so great that You gave Your one and only Son so that we could have eternal life. Help us to trust in Jesus Christ alone as our Savior. May we continue to spread love God’s love through our actions, during this Lent Season and beyond.


Ismael Matambura



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