The Gospel according to John (14:6-14)
Jesus said to Thomas, “I am the way and the truth and the life.
No one comes to the Father except through me.
If you know me, then you will also know my Father.
From now on you do know him and have seen him.”
Philip said to him,
“Master, show us the Father, and that will be enough for us.”
Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you for so long a time
and you still do not know me, Philip?
Whoever has seen me has seen the Father.
How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?
Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me?
The words that I speak to you I do not speak on my own.
The Father who dwells in me is doing his works.
Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me,
or else, believe because of the works themselves.
Amen, amen, I say to you,
whoever believes in me will do the works that I do,
and will do greater ones than these,
because I am going to the Father.
And whatever you ask in my name, I will do,
so that the Father may be glorified in the Son.
If you ask anything of me in my name, I will do it.”
The thing that gives me hope in today’s Gospel is how Jesus’ work was still accomplished, even though the Apostles weren’t always the sharpest or who even understood what they were being taught. If Jesus could spread His Good News, even with poor materials like that, then maybe He could even do it through me!
My dad worked at a lumber yard his whole life. One of the things that he did from time to time was to take some of the odds and ends from the yard that couldn’t be sold, bring them home, and then turn them into something useful. They weren’t fancy, but he still turned them into things that were worthwhile. He built shelves for my mom, and sturdy wooden boxes for storage. No one would think they were elegant in any way, but I know we appreciated them!
Jesus’ ability to work with us is like that. We are like the odds and ends that my dad found in the lumber yard, and Jesus works on us like my dad did, making something good and useful out of us. Maybe Jesus even used that kind of illustration with His Apostles (His earthly dad, Joseph, was a carpenter, after all). All He longed for was for His closest friends to begin to understand the depth of Jesus’ own love for everyone. They definitely did not get it in Jesus’ earthly lifetime (remember? They deserted Him when He was arrested). But, as we see in the Acts of the Apostles, through the power of the Holy Spirit, they caught fire and spread His Good News, even to the point of laying down their lives.
May each of us, imperfect though we are, do what we can to be formed by Jesus, the Eternal Carpenter, into something useful to bring His love and mercy to the world. And, let us start with those whom God places in our presence today!
Action for the Day:
Ask God today to use you (yes, YOU!), even with your imperfections to further His Kingdom. May you be open to whatever God may call you to do, and just share His love and watch the results!
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