Daily Reflection – 1/4/2023
John was with two of his disciples, and as he watched Jesus walk by, he said, “Behold, the Lamb of God.” The two disciples heard what he said and followed Jesus. Jesus turned and saw them following him and said to them, “What are you looking for?” They said to him, “Rabbi” (which translated means Teacher), “where are you staying?” He said to them, “Come, and you will see.” So they went and saw where he was staying, and they stayed with him that day. It was about four in the afternoon. Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter, was one of the two who heard John and followed Jesus. He first found his own brother Simon and told him, “We have found the Messiah” which is translated Christ. Then he brought him to Jesus. Jesus looked at him and said, “You are Simon the son of John; you will be called Cephas” which is translated Peter. ( John 1: 35-42)
“Come and you will see.”
But this is the 21st century; and many of us do not hear the call of God to “Come and see.”
Maybe Jesus is calling to us and we are too distracted, or hurt, or swallowed up by life’s events; or maybe we don’t know how to see or listen to His message or are just not listening at all.
But the message of this Gospel is that Jesus’ call – His invitation – is always open.
He invites us, like Andrew and John, to join Him for the afternoon and share a simple meal of bread and wine. He invites us to be baptized into His family so we can receive the many gifts He desires to give us. He invites us to know His laughter and joy; and He invites us to suffer with Him by knowing loneliness, sickness, heartache, and loss.
“Rabbi, where do you live?” “Come and you will see.”
Our imagination can visualize a small Hebrew home, with a low doorway so large animals would not wander in. We can imagine that this is where Jesus lived: in a small but adequate house on a simple Hebrew street. Jesus, and any visitors, would have to bend down to get through the door.
We are asked to bend down, too.
We are to lower ourselves in humility, patience, reconciliation, and love.
For how are we to live with the Creator of the Universe if we are unwilling to honestly look at our own souls in the light of the One who loves us?
We need to stop and ask ourselves: “What am I looking for in my life?”
It is one of the deepest question one person can ask. To paraphrase, “What—really, down deep—are you seeking in your life? Power? Pleasure? Wealth? Relief from loneliness? Relief from pain, hunger or illness? Knowledge? Truth? Love?” How do you answer this question right now?
And Jesus’ response–“Come and see” – means, “Follow me as a committed disciple and you will come to really see (understand and believe) in a whole new way.”
The destination of our faith journey is to have a personal encounter with Jesus Christ. Granted, it is far from easy nowadays to listen to God speaking to us in the noisy culture we live in, and with all the distractions we have in our mind that we bring to Church!
That personal encounter DOES happen. Every moment of our lives. It happens in a myriad of ways. In a thousand touches of grace. He Is there. But we need to invite him into our very lives. We need to walk upright in His love. We need to yield to Him and, in that moment, give our very lives to Him. He who gave us that life seeks only for us to hand it over to Him so He can fill it with his love. And when, in our mortal lives, something happens that seems to distance us from Him, then THAT is the time that we need to rise above that circumstance and ask for the grace and understanding to move through it. That request WILL be met by His strength as he guides us through it.
Ultimately, we respond to Jesus’ call by inviting Him into our heart. For that is where He truly wants to live, and rest, and share a simple meal of bread and wine.
Prayer of The Day
Lord, I believe that you are the Messiah, the Lamb of God come into the world to save us. I humbly offer you now my mind and heart to focus on your Divine Word, so I may better know and understand your will for me. Jesus, help me to put you first in my life and strive to help others to know you.
Discipleship is an invitation from God — it cannot be self-invented, self-invited. It begins with an inner call, a dream, an inspiration oftentimes in our lived, ordinary experience. It begins with having Jesus pointed out to us by the John the Baptists of the world. It begins with being introduced to Jesus by the Andrews of the world. What will our response be? Will we immediately follow? Will we make a fundamental decision to orient our lives toward Jesus?