Monday, February 22nd – Caitlin Yadamec
Gospel: MT 16:13-19
When Jesus went into the region of Caesarea Philippi
he asked his disciples,
“Who do people say that the Son of Man is?”
They replied, “Some say John the Baptist, others Elijah,
still others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.”
He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?”
Simon Peter said in reply,
“You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”
Jesus said to him in reply, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah.
For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father.
And so I say to you, you are Peter,
and upon this rock I will build my Church,
and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it.
I will give you the keys to the Kingdom of heaven.
Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven;
and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”
“God Is Love”
Most of us are taught from a very young age that God is Love. As we grow older, we gradually learn more about the depth and magnitude of this truth- specifically as it manifests itself in our closest and dearest relationships. In today's iconic reading, I think that Jesus also shows us something beautiful about relationships.
The disciples express their awareness that not everyone was sold on the whole "Jesus is the Messiah" idea. You have to imagine that the disciples struggled with the judgment of others- indeed, the gospels have plenty of accounts of Jesus' closest friends doubting and denying him. Jesus knew that his disciples were struggling with this, and as any great teacher does, he leads them to the answer through careful questioning.
"But who do YOU say that I am?"
In this instance, Jesus is not wasting any energy thinking about what everyone else is thinking about him or how he should prove himself to the larger community. His main concern is the hearts of those closest to him.
How often do we come home at the end of the day with nothing left to give to our closest friends and family? The message we give them, intentially or not, is that something else deserves the best of us. During this Lenten season, let's focus on cultivating what and who is most important to us. By doing so, we might come a little bit closer to understanding what "God is Love" truly means.
Choose groups to clone to: