REFLECTION FOR TODAY,
January 16, 2021
By Fr. Andrew Ibegbulem, OSA
As he passed by, he saw Levi, son of Alphaeus, sitting at the customs post. Jesus said to him, “Follow me.” And he got up and followed Jesus. Mark 2:14
Jesus calls us to place our trust in him and to follow him. Responding to the call of discipleship is not always easy, but we have a model in Levi. He was going about his business when Jesus called him. But he placed his trust in Jesus and responded to the call. God loves us unconditionally, and gives us the grace to overcome our fears and doubts and walk in his ways.
In our gospel reference today we hear of the encounter Jesus had with Levi, and encounter that changed the life of Levi. Levi, who is also known as Matthew, was going about his occupation of collecting taxes at his customs post. It appears that Jesus spoke only these two simple words to Levi: “Follow me.” As a result of these two words, Levi abandons his former life and becomes a follower of Jesus. Why would Levi do such a thing? What was it that convinced him to follow Jesus? Clearly there was much more than just a two-word invitation from Jesus that convinced him to respond.
That which convinced Levi was a special grace of God which produced within his soul a “clarity beyond doubting.” Somehow Levi just knew that God was calling him to abandon his former life and embrace this new life. There was no long discussion, no weighing of the pros and cons, no prolonged thinking about it. Levi just knew, and he responded.
Though this form of clarity in life is rare, it’s important to be aware of the fact that sometimes God does act this way. Sometimes God speaks with such clarity that our conviction is certain and we know we must act. This is a great gift when it happens! And though this depth of instant clarity is not always the way God speaks to us, it’s important to acknowledge that God does speak to us this way at times.
Reflect, today, upon this call of Levi. Ponder this inner certitude he was given in that moment. Try to imagine what he experienced and what others may have thought of his choice to follow Jesus. Be open to this same grace; and if you ever feel as if God speaks to you with such clarity, be ready and willing to respond without hesitation.
My dear Lord, thank You for calling us all to follow You without hesitation. Thank You for the joy of being Your disciple. Give me the grace to always know Your will for my life and help me to respond to You with total abandonment and trust. Jesus, I trust in You.