Scripture: Lectionary 391. Exodus 3:1-6. Psalm 103:1-2,3-4,6-7. Matthew 11:25-27:
There are similar thoughts and praise to the Father in the prayer that we listen to from the Gospel today. Jesus is thankful that the Father reveals himself to the lowly, the children, and the poor. I include all three under the expression children. The passage has a resonance in the Gospel of John and Fr. Raymond Brown, S.S., once said or wrote that it appears that a “meteorite from John fell into the field of Matthew”! That is a good way of expressing this unique and beautiful passage of St. Matthew. It goes beyond our prayer and is unique to the Son of God, Jesus. We learn how to pray and praise the Father from this passage and I see it in connection with the Lord’s Prayer in St. Matthew, thus we have some of Jesus’ most intimate prayers in these two passages from Matthew.
We receive the Gospels and especially the words of God as revealed truth. Jesus is the Word of God in John’s Gospel and that Gospel is necessary for us to understand what revealed truth is as seen in the Johannine Jesus. The passage helps us to see how the evangelists are in agreement in how Jesus prayed and that is a sure sign that we can imitate that prayer of praise and thanksgiving as his disciples. It is he who teaches us how to pray both by the Lord’s Prayer and the other prayerful words of Jesus in all of the Gospels. We realize that Matthew is also in agreement with the Prologue of John which tells us no one knows the Father but the Son and those to whom the Son reveals the Father.
As believing disciples we see Jesus as a unique mediator between ourselves and God and also as the Revealer (especially in John). Jesus continues to reveal God to us each day as we listen to the Scriptures in the liturgy and as we do our own meditation of lectio divina (spiritual reflections on the Scriptures). Today we can pray like Jesus does in this beautiful pericope. We can supplement the same prayer by bringing in passages from the Lord’s Prayer (Our Father, Pater Noster) which tells us God is our Father…”Our Father who art in heaven….” Since Jesus himself taught us how to pray we simply repeat the request of the apostles and start our prayer with the “Our Father who art in heaven.” Many say the prayer three times a day or even more by saying the rosary which starts the mystery with the Our Father.
Let us be attentive to the words of this daily prayer and realize by so doing we are praising the Father by imitating the Son through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Copyright 2013 Fr. Bertrand Buby, S.M.