Mass Reading & Meditation for March 16, 2013
Meditation: John 7:40-53
4th Week of Lent
The Messiah will not come from Galilee, will he? (John 7:41)
There was confusion amongst the crowd as they tried to reconcile the origins of the Messiah with the relative unimportance of a place like Galilee. This is not the only time that people have asked this kind of question. “A saint will not come from the slums of Calcutta, will she?” “A pope will not come from Communist Poland, will he?” “A Doctor of the Church will not be a girl from a remote French cloister, will she?”
Jesus’ critics were focused on the fact that he came from an area of no particular significance. While they speculated about Galilee versus Bethlehem, the home of the great King David, they missed the way that Jesus’ wisdom and authority pointed to his royal lineage. Fooled by his ordinary appearance, they could not discern the King of kings and Lord of lords, the messianic “Son of David,” who himself raised David from obscurity to nobility (1 Samuel 16).
Of course, they also were unaware that the Messiah’s ordinariness was foreshadowed in the Scriptures: “There was in him no stately bearing to make us look at him, nor appearance that would attract us to him… . We held him in no esteem” (Isaiah 53:2-3). Jesus was overlooked then as he is today, just as the shepherd David was overlooked before the Lord told Samuel, “Not as man sees does God see, because man sees the appearance, but the Lord looks into the heart” (1 Samuel 16:7). In the same way, many of the apostles would have been overlooked by anyone but God. Even the first pope, St. Peter, was just a fisherman!
God does not overlook anyone, including you! He doesn’t worry about where you came from. Rather, he looks at your heart. He looks at your desires and your dreams. He doesn’t look back but looks ahead. He wants to give you a future full of hope. Whether or not the world thinks you are important, you matter more than the world to him. So don’t keep him waiting any longer. Go to him with your cares and your fears. Go to him with your hopes and dreams. Let him turn your ordinary into his extraordinary!
“Jesus, to the world you may be just a carpenter from Galilee or even a prophet, but to me you are the eternal Son of God, my Redeemer and Lord.”
Jeremiah 11:18-20; Psalm 7:2-3, 9-12