If only we experience Jesus: John, the son of Zechariah and Elizabeth, called the baptizer in the gospels, came roaring out of the desert in last Sunday’s gospel. He was regarded as a holy man, a prophet. He told it like it was – a prophet tells not so much what will happen, but what is the unsugared truth.
Doing that got him in trouble; it usually does. He told king Herod it was wrong for him to take his brother’s wife. He was put in jail. That is where we find him in today’s Gospel
He has much time to think. He hears reports about Jesus’ ministry. His expectations of Jesus were not being fulfilled. He, like ourselves, expects others to be like us. Jesus was not the expected firebrand like himself. He didn’t understand. Doubts about Jesus crept in. He sent his disciples to Jesus to ask in his typically very direct way: “Are you he who is to come, or shall we look for another?”
Jesus replies in his typically indirect way – he points to his life and his works. What do you see and what do you hear? The blind se again, the lame walk, lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear and the dead are raised to life and the Good News is proclaimed to the poor. The expectations of prophet Isaiah are fulfilled.
Jesus sent us to proclaim his Good News to the whole world. But his Good News is not a statement, something that we preach. The Good News is Jesus. Jesus is good news because wherever he goes the blind see again, the lame walk and lepers are cleansed. Today it is what Jesus does in the lives of people which is his witness.
What has Jesus done in your life? Has he entered your life to give you joy that makes you sing, eyes that make you see your brothers and sisters in a new way, to feel for them and go to them? Are you living witness to Jesus or do you have to rely on ‘preaching’? The greatest proof that Jesus is the Savior are those he has saved, his saints who give themselves for others.
Advent is the time when we, the least in the Kingdom of heaven but still greater than John the Baptist, may receive the gift of meeting Jesus. To know Jesus personally and experience his saving acts in our lives is a gift. Let us pray to the Spirit that we have no doubts about Jesus but that he be our Savior and Lord, someone we come to know. As the Messiah in my life may he open my eyes, strengthen my legs, let me hear his voice and cleanse me of my leprosy of sins.
Do you want Jesus to be a real Person for you, your Savior and Lord? Then have no doubts, pray earnestly to meet him. Go in search of him.