Sunday, January 23, 2011
Chosen And Called
Our pastor celebrated the Mass I attended this weekend, and in his homily on today's Gospel he posed the questions: "What did Peter, Andrew, James and John see in Jesus that day by the sea to make them leave everyone and everything in their lives as they then knew it? and then, and maybe more importantly, What did Jesus see in them to choose and call them as His Apostles?"
These questions made me think and reflect on my own life in relation to this Gospel passage. What was it that I saw in Jesus eight years ago that made me almost literally leave everything and even some who were close to me at the time, and return to Him? And more importantly:What did Jesus see in me?
As for the first question, I can only say that at the time I was sitting in great darkness, and through a friend, was able to see in Jesus the great Light that He is and the Truth that He is. I saw that He, being the Way, was the only way.
The second question, well I can only surmise and speculate on what Our Lord saw in me. True, by virtue of my baptism I became His. And while my life up to the point of my leaving Him had seeds planted, it is the time of my return and henceforth I sometimes wonder about. He reveals these things to me as I go, and this enables me to be able to cooperate with His grace and His mercy in my life.
Everyone can ask these questions, and because Jesus loves us each as individuals, and because we love Him as individual souls, the answers to those questions are deeply personal ones.
Being a Christian is about an encounter and a relationship with Jesus. We have not chosen Him, but He has chosen us. Faith enables us to live this relationship. It allows us to answer His call as those fishermen did that day, to come after Him and be apostles in our own time who go and spread the Good News of His love, His mercy and the kingdom at hand.
Yes, Jesus is the Light that has come to shine on a darkened world, but there are those who still cannot or will not see it. May our lives reflect His light and life and touch those who are in need.
Psalm 45: Canticle of Love to the King
My heart overflows with a good theme;
I address my verses to the King;
My tongue is the pen of a ready writer.
You are fairer than the sons of men;
Grace is poured upon Your lips;
Therefore God has blessed You forever.
Gird Your sword on Your thigh, O Mighty One,
In Your splendor and Your majesty!
And in Your majesty ride on victoriously,
For the cause of truth and meekness and righteousness;
Let Your right hand teach You awesome things.
Your arrows are sharp;
The peoples fall under You;
Your arrows are in the heart of the King’s enemies.
Your throne, O God, is forever and ever;
A scepter of uprightness is the scepter of Your kingdom.
You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness;
Therefore God, Your God, has anointed You
With the oil of joy above Your fellows.
All Your garments are fragrant with myrrh and aloes and cassia;
Out of ivory palaces stringed instruments have made You glad.
Kings’ daughters are among Your noble ladies;
At Your right hand stands the queen in gold from Ophir.