Daily Reflection – Dec 13, 2018
Thursday 13 December 2018
First Reading: IS 41:13-20
The Lord is gracious and merciful; slow to anger, and of great kindness.
PS 145:1 AND 9, 10-11, 12-13AB
Gospel Reading: MT 11:11-15
Today’s Note: Memorial of Saint Lucy, Virgin and Martyr
Jesus said to the crowds:
“Amen, I say to you,
among those born of women
there has been none greater than John the Baptist;
yet the least in the Kingdom of heaven is greater than he.
From the days of John the Baptist until now,
the Kingdom of heaven suffers violence,
and the violent are taking it by force.
All the prophets and the law prophesied up to the time of John.
And if you are willing to accept it,
he is Elijah, the one who is to come.
Whoever has ears ought to hear.”
“If anyone has ears to hear, let him listen!” MT 11:15
Jesus has a way of turning things upside down. There is no doubt John the Baptist was a credit to his parents. He was committed to the God to whom they were committed. Perhaps his methods were a little eccentric, but nonetheless, no one could doubt his sincerity or his uprightness. He was a man of principles. And yet, while praising John the Baptist, Jesus makes a seemingly curious statement. “Yet,” he says “the least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he is.”
It is true. John was almost a “model person”. He heard the message and stayed true to it even at the cost of his own life. However, the person who goes to Mass week after week and seemingly gets nothing out of it, but keeps going anyway, is greater. The person who has thrown away his or her life and reclaimed it, is greater. The person with the skeletons in the cupboard who goes to God and begs forgiveness, is greater. The person who struggles and tries to believe in God despite the disaster of their own lives, is greater.
Why is this so? Because, while John saw many facets of God, he never saw the Cross. He never saw the fullness of God’s love in action. John preached repentance. Jesus preached the faithful love of his Father. If you have known the Cross, even if of your own making, your soul has known the hearth of God – take courage, you are indeed greater!
A little prayer to say often:
Lord, may my life always proclaim your fidelity to me. Amen.