REFLECTION FOR TODAY,
August 31, 2020
By Fr. Andrew Ibegbulem, OSA
“Amen, I say to you, no prophet is accepted in his own native place.” Luke 4:24
Jesus goes to the synagogue in Nazareth, and reads from a scroll of the prophet Isaiah. After this, he declares, “today this Scripture passage is fulfilled in your hearing.” The people question his authority, arise in fury, and drive him out of town.
Do you ever feel that it’s easier to talk about Jesus with a stranger than with those closest to you? Why is that? Sometimes it is hard to share your faith with those closest to you, and it can be even harder to let yourself be inspired by the faith of someone close to you.
Jesus makes this statement above after He had just read from the Prophet Isaiah in the presence of His people. They listened to Him, were somewhat impressed at first, but quickly came to the conclusion that He was nothing special. In the end, they were filled with fury at Jesus, drove Him out of the town and almost killed Him right then and there. But it wasn’t His time.
If the Son of God had a hard time being accepted as a prophet by His own kin, so also will we have a hard time sharing the Gospel with those close to us. But what is far more important for us to consider is the way we do or do not see Christ in those closest to us. Are we among those who refuse to see Christ present in our family and those we are close to? Do we tend, instead, to be critical and judgmental to those around us?
The truth is that it’s much easier for us to see the faults of those closest to us than their virtue. It’s much easier to see their sins than the presence of God in their lives. But it is not our job to focus in on their sin. It’s our job to see God in them.
Each and every person we are close to will, no doubt, have goodness in them. They will reflect the presence of God if we are willing to see that. Our goal must be to not only see it, but to seek it out. And the closer we are to them the more we must focus in on the presence of God in their lives.
Reflect, today, upon whether or not YOU are willing to accept the prophetic voice of Christ in the people all around you. Are you willing to see Him, acknowledge Him and love Him in them? If not, you are guilty of Jesus’ words above.
Lord, may I see You in all those with whom I relate each and every day. May I constantly seek You out in their lives. And as I discover You, may I love You in them. Jesus, I trust in You.