Important Questions

  • January 17, 2021 (readings)
  • Second Sunday of Ordinary Time
  • Elizabeth Stromberg
  • John 1:35-42

    John was standing with two of his disciples, and as he watched Jesus walk by, he said, “Behold, the Lamb of God.” The two disciples heard what he said and followed Jesus. Jesus turned and saw them following him and said to them, “What are you looking for?” They said to him, “Rabbi” — which translated means Teacher —“where are you staying?” He said to them, “Come, and you will see.” So they went and saw where Jesus was staying, and they stayed with him that day. It was about four in the afternoon. Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter, was one of the two who heard John and followed Jesus. He first found his own brother Simon and told him, “We have found the Messiah,” which is translated Christ. Then he brought him to Jesus. Jesus looked at him and said, “You are Simon the son of John; you will be called Cephas,” which is translated Peter.

    Opening Prayer: Dear Jesus, I want to come and stay with you during this prayer. Help me to set aside distractions and worries so that I can hear your voice in my heart.

    Encountering Christ:

    1. What Are You Looking For?: The questions God asks through the Bible are always penetrating and pertinent. Today, he asks us, “What are you looking for?” That is to say, when we approach Jesus, are we looking for a solution to a problem? Someone to blame? An answer? Consolation? Or, are we looking for a person? Do we approach prayer as a relationship? Time to be with someone whom we love and who loves us? If we want to know Jesus better, let’s imitate the disciples in this Gospel and stay with him. 

    2. Where Are You Staying?: The questions we ask God are also important. We shouldn’t be afraid to ask God questions, especially questions that can lead us into a deeper relationship with him, such as, “Where are you Lord? Where are you staying? Where do I find you time and again?” And we ask ourselves, “What aspects of Christ in the Gospel always stand out to me? What kind of needs do I feel called to respond to? Where do I experience God working through me for the good of others?” By seeking the answers to these questions we discover Christ within us.

    3. Come and See: In the day-to-day experience of prayer, it can be hard to see where God is leading us, but by looking back and seeing the patterns of his presence and love in our lives, we can grow in our recognition of his guidance. When the first apostles initially experienced Christ, they immediately invited others to come and see. The Christ that we experience is the Christ that we are called to transmit to others. By reflecting upon our own experiences of Christ’s loving presence in our lives, we become better apostles of his love for those around us.

    Conversing with Christ: Lord, help me to enter into dialogue with you every day. I want to be able to hear your questions and also ask you mine. I want to know you better so that I can follow you more closely and bring others to do the same.

    Resolution: Lord, today by your grace I will take time to recognize your presence in my day.

    For Further Reflection: Transmitting the experience of how Christ has touched us is also known as a “personal vocation.” Learn more by reading Discovering Your Personal Vocation by Herbert Alphonso, SJ.


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