Today’s Gospel: Matthew 3:13-17, The Baptism of the Lord
“This is my beloved son (or daughter), with whom I am well pleased.” Don’t we all hope to hear those words as we face death and our personal judgment? Jesus’ baptism reminds us of two ways we can live – today – as sons and daughters of God: obedience and seeking righteousness.
When we obey God, it’s more than just His laws and commandments. It’s not about rules, it’s about the ongoing conversion of our hearts, our metanoia. But obedience, our humble submission to what God asks of us each day, leads us closer to heaven step by step, day by day. Simultaneously, seeking righteousness requires intentional movement towards holiness by avoiding sin and striving for virtue.
The world tells us to seek accolades and affirmations. We might be tempted to acquiesce. But the Lord reminds us to seek first the kingdom of heaven and its righteousness. This is no easy task. When we follow Jesus’ example at His baptism through obedience to God and living righteously, we will likely encounter many hardships along the path of life. But our promise, our hope, remains in these words: “This is my beloved son (daughter), with whom I am well pleased.”
What are the obstacles right now that are preventing me from fully obeying God’s laws of love in my life? How can I seek His kingdom and strive for holiness today?
Heavenly Father, keep me close to you through the grace of my baptism. Remind me through your son, Jesus, that I must follow you even and especially when it’s difficult.
Copyright 2017 Jeannie Ewing