Sunday, January 14, 2018

“Commandment #1: Believe in yourself. Commandment #2: Get over yourself.”

If we turn from self towards God, our understanding and our will become nobler and readier to embrace all that is good: if we never rise above the slough of our own miseries we do ourselves a great disservice. (St Teresa of Avila, Interior Castle)

Gospel Text: (JN 1:35-42)
John was standing 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 Jesus 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.

Like Peter in today’s gospel reading, we are called by name when God speaks to us. God knows us better than we know ourselves, much like our parents who know us and call us by name (or names). Children often try to deceive themselves and others about what they’ve done, and who they are. But parents, who give life itself to their children, know their children. Parents understand their children’s faults, as well as their strengths. Children often don’t want to work to develop the skills and talents they have, and, trying to convince themselves and others, will say, “I’m just not good at that. I can’t do it.”

Of course, it’s not only children who think this. We adults are just as good at running away from something that we don’t want to do, using the handy excuse that we’re “just not able to do it.” St. Peter did this all the time. But God, the Father of each one of us, knows us better than we know ourselves. When He calls us by name, He’s calling us to be honest to the truth about who we now are, and who He wants us to be.

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