Today’s Gospel: Matthew 16:13-19 – Solemnity of Sts. Peter & Paul
“But who do you say that I am?” Jesus asks His apostles 2000 years ago, and He asks me and you today. We can certainly answer as Peter did, for he spoke the truth. Jesus is the Christ, the Messiah, the Son of the Living God. But if you are anything like me, there are many other ways to answer that question, depending on the time and circumstance. Let me give you some examples.
When I was a child, I had a profound yet simple faith in Jesus. He was simply God and He held everything together. Everything. My very existence at each moment was due to the fact that God thought of me. He held me in mind, just as He held every detail of my life (and everyone else’s life) in mind. As a teenager and young adult I struggled, as many do, with the demands of the gospel, my own idealism, and the harsh reality of human weakness… my own and that of others. As a young man and a new husband and father, the humanity of Jesus impressed itself upon me deeply. As I held my firstborn son just moments after his birth, I had a new-found understanding of what it means that God became man in Jesus of Nazareth. God placed himself humbly in our hands. He became a baby who needed to be fed, changed, cuddled.
Looking back at my life I can see that Jesus has been for me the all-powerful God, the all-merciful Savior, and the very real, very human redeemer. He has been my Friend, my Companion, an Advocate, Shepherd, and Lord. He always comes to me just as I am. And He comes to me just as I need.
How do you need Jesus to come to you today? As your Lord? Your Savior? Your Shepherd or Friend? Tell Him that you want Him to come to you. Open your heart to let Him in.
Jesus, You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God. You love me and You come to me just as I am. Please help me to be open to all the love and grace You want to give me today. Please come and stay with me.
Copyright 2017 Jeff Young