15 January 2017
The Lord said to me, ‘You are my servant, Israel,
in whom I shall be glorified’;
I was honoured in the eyes of the Lord,
my God was my strength.
And now the Lord has spoken,
he who formed me in the womb to be his servant,
to bring Jacob back to him,
to gather Israel to him:
‘It is not enough for you to be my servant,
to restore the tribes of Jacob and bring back the survivors of Israel;
I will make you the light of the nations
so that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.’
1 Corinthians 1:1-3
I, Paul, appointed by God to be an apostle, together with brother Sosthenes, send greetings to the church of God in Corinth, to the holy people of Jesus Christ, who are called to take their place among all the saints everywhere who pray to our Lord Jesus Christ; for he is their Lord no less than ours. May God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ send you grace and peace.
Seeing Jesus coming towards him, John said, ‘Look, there is the lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world. This is the one I spoke of when I said: A man is coming after me who ranks before me because he existed before me. I did not know him myself, and yet it was to reveal him to Israel that I came baptising with water.’ John also declared, ‘I saw the Spirit coming down on him from heaven like a dove and resting on him. I did not know him myself, but he who sent me to baptise with water had said to me, “The man on whom you see the Spirit come down and rest is the one who is going to baptise with the Holy Spirit.” Yes, I have seen and I am the witness that he is the Chosen One of God.’
Yes, I have seen and I am the witness that he is the Chosen One of God
There are occasions where I witness the behaviour of Christians and their behaviour surprises me as their actions sometimes do not reflect the way of the Lord. The words they say and actions they do all seem to generate a lot of negative energy to the people around them. The readings of today remind us of the importance to avoid such behaviour and the importance for us to become agents of love.
Jesus is the Light of the World and we are supposed to proclaim Jesus’s kingdom to all around us. The Church is essentially missionary and all of us are called to play an important role in spreading Jesus’s message to all around us. The issue we have here is how then do we go about proclaiming this message if we do not have an intimate relationship with Jesus? This relationship with Jesus is for us to deepen and strengthen for Jesus requires us to give to him totally so that we can be his instruments in the world.
An intimate relationship is not built overnight but is one where much time and effort is spent in knowing the other party. Communication is important for a meaningful conversation to occur and this communication is done through prayer and reflection. We need to allow God to speak to us in the quiet and ask Him to show us what it means to be Christians. Only then can we be energised to spread the Word of God to those whom we are called to spread the Word to.
(Today’s Oxygen by Nicholas Chia)
Prayer – Lord, we pray for all who continue to preach your message despite facing persecution.
Thanksgiving – We give thanks for all who are catechists.