Thursday, January 5, 2017

Reflection: John 1:43-51

Memorial of St. John Neumann, Bishop  - John 1:43-51

Today’s Gospel begins as Jesus starts to travel to Galilee.  However, Jesus became distracted when he saw Philip.  Jesus approached Philip, looked intently at him and said: “Follow me.”  Philip had been born in Bethsaida, the same village where Andrew and Peter had been born.  I wonder if Philip had heard Andrew and Peter talk about the man who had changed their lives?  

Philip went to Nathanael and told him: “We have found the one about whom Moses spoke in the law and the prophets: Jesus the son of Joseph.  Nathanael was not at all impressed with Philip’s report.  Rather Nathanael responded by asking: “Can anything good come from Nazareth?”  Philip stood his ground and said: “Come, see for yourself.”  And Nathanael went with Philip to find Jesus.

As Nathanael approached the place where Jesus was: Jesus saw him coming toward him and he said: “This man is a true Israelite!  There is no guile in him.” In response Nathanael asked Jesus: “How do you know me?  Jesus replied: “I saw you under the fig tree”.  Immediately Nathanael said to Jesus: “Rabbi, you are the Son of God. You are the king of Israel.” Jesus questioned Nathanael, “Do you believe simply because I saw you under the fig tree?  You will see much greater things than that”!  

Can you remember the moment when you recognized Jesus as the Son of God for the first time?  Take a few moments and remember this sacred event.  What happened in your mind and heart in that moment?  Did you immediately open your heart to Jesus?  Or did you have doubts about what you were experiencing?  Did you experience Jesus’ great love for you?

Today Jesus will call you again and again.  Will you hear His call?  Or will you be so absorbed in yourself that you will not realize that Jesus is calling you?  Today and every day, we are called by Jesus!  I pray that each day you and I will hear and respond to Jesus’ loving call!

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