Reflection by Ann Rock
Today’s Gospel: John 16:16-20
In light of Jesus’ resurrection this cryptic message seems pretty obvious. Jesus did leave for a little while and then returned. However, for the disciples this must have been a puzzling message, even odd. It seems to me Jesus often spoke to His followers in riddles and enigmas. There are consistent incidents in the gospels where Jesus says things the disciples just don’t understand. But why?
I am inspired to think that perhaps Jesus did this as a way of keeping His disciples tuned in to Him, to keep them close. They would have to pay attention to everything He says and does so as not to miss the meaning He was conveying. Jesus seems to have been teaching them His way of doing things, which was countercultural then, and even more so now.
Jesus’ cryptic sayings could also be reminding us that sometimes God’s ways are just not clear to us. He lives in a different “space-time continuum”. God’s ways are not our ways. We, however, are supposed to trust that God will reveal Himself and His meaning at the appropriate time. We must stay close, as the disciples did, and pay attention. All will be revealed in God’s time.
In a truly human fashion the disciples take up their confusion with each other. Jesus is standing right there and even prompts them to ask Him what he’s talking about. They just continue to talk among themselves, scratch their heads and shrug their shoulders. How often do I try to handle my dilemmas myself or complain and grumble to others rather than talking to God about what is actually going on and how to solve it?
For me this scripture is a warning, reminder and instruction to keep focused on Jesus. He is the answer. God has given us the sacred words of the Bible from which to learn about Him. Jesus has also modeled the example of prayer as the way to learn the Father’s will and ways. We are called to keep close to our Lord through scripture and prayer and the answers we need will be provided.
How can I better understand our Lord’s teachings and follow them?
Dear Lord, thank You for the call to listen to Your word in scripture and in prayer. Please strengthen my resolve to turn to You when I have questions. Amen.
Copyright 2019 Ann Rock
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