Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Canada


During the lovely, mystical Paschal dawn as the Gospel of John is proclaimed we are offered wonderful insights about what Christ's Resurrection means to us. One of them deals with the link between our will, faith and Divine power.

John proclaims that to all who received Christ and believed in His name: "He gave power to become children of God" (John 1:12). What does it mean to become a child of God? Why, it means to become like God. Children become like their parents especially if they love and respect them. What is it for a human being to become like God? The answer to that is found in the Person of Jesus.

Jesus was a Man who was strong, yet gentle. He was immensely kind, and yet forceful and uncompromising in opposing evil. He was loving and truthful. He was full of compassion and helped people to freedom from those things which prevented their unfolding to the potential which God created them to achieve. He was completely free of evil Himself.

This is the sort of person a child of God becomes. This is the sort of people we are called to become. Are we like that? To be honest, we have to say: "Not yet". But we can be like that. Jesus gives the power for this to all who believe and trust in Him. Is it really that simple? Yes, and also that difficult.

We must make the effort of choosing to believe. Lets be honest about it: there is a lot in this world that makes it difficult to believe. There is even something within each of us that rebels against faith from time to time. Some people give up and become cynics. If we wish to receive God's power to make us His children we must choose again and again to believe! It takes a repeated act of our will.

Each time we are tested, we must humbly and prayerfully come to Jesus and ask for the wisdom and power He has promised us. The good news, attested to by millions throughout the ages, is that He does indeed help us. It is a help that is sufficient for all time. It is given day by day, hour by hour, minute by minute. Let us not despair because the process seems to be taking so long to achieve. It is not unusual to sometimes feel drawn towards falsehood and unfaithfulness. But it is also normal for those who are becoming God's children to resist these temptations and keep on striving together with our brothers and sisters to reflect the character of our Father in Heaven.

At long last the process will bring striking results (although there are results all along). The world will be blessed by the revealing of all of God's children. And they - we! -shall dwell in joy forever with all our brothers and sisters and the Saviour Whom we shall have served faithfully, with a pure and humble heart.

V. Rev. Ihor Kutash