Behold the Lamb of God ~ 2nd Sunday Ordinary Time ~ St. John 1:29-34:
John the Baptist saw Jesus coming toward him… Behold the Lamb of God; I did not know him; baptize with water; baptize with the Holy Spirit; Now I have seen and testified that he is the Son of God.
The following prayer has guided my life. The Cursillo prays it before they witness to their study, piety, action and close moment with Jesus:
Come Holy Spirit,
Fill the Hearts of your faithful.
Enkindle in us the fire of your Love.
Send forth your Spirit and we shall be created,
and you shall renew the face of the earth.
O God, who by the light of the Holy Spirit instructs the hearts of your faithful,
Grant that by the same Holy Spirit, we may be truly wise,
and forever rejoice in your consolation, through Christ Our Lord. Amen!
Do you know what happens to black coal if it is deep enough in the ground, under great enough pressure, suffering and a million years? Yes, it becomes a crystal clear and radiant diamond. We don’t have to wait millions of years to become God’s diamonds, God’s children… because Jesus, the Lamb of God, takes the suffering on himself.
This week I had the opportunity to celebrate Mass at one of our nursing homes. O how they suffer. It was amazing how Jesus spoke through them. When they were anointed, they were reminded that they would be healed of something to help them renew the face of the earth. I asked them what they wanted to be healed of. They didn’t look at me like I was off my rocker. They didn’t say, “Duh, cant’ you see I need healing of my abandonment or bitterness or physical suffering.” They didn’t want temporary relief, but everlasting healing. What they asked for was wisdom, knowledge and understanding… courage, counsel and reverence… wonder and awe. They wanted the Holy Spirit! After communion we sang this song. We heard Jesus cry out to us,”
Come, come unto me
I will make you a jewel, precious and rare, the glory you’ll bear,
In the crown of God.
~From the dawn of creation, to the tree on Calvary
I chose you and gave my life, to be my own and to be my delight.
~There are words you alone can say, and there are deeds only you can do.
Trust in me and do not tremble, for I go with you to show you the way!
*Come, come unto me… (Bob Hurd)
While holding the Body and Blood of Jesus, the priest proclaims: “Behold the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world. Blessed are those who are called to the supper of the LAMB!” We respond, “O Lord I am not worthy to receive you, but only say the word and my soul will be healed.”
Since we were little children, we have been saying this every Sunday, if not more, but I sense we get stuck on the first part of unworthiness. God wants to heal us. We just have to ask. God sent God’s own beloved son to us so that we can feast on His Body and Blood and become what we eat. (The Lamb of God.) Two thousand years before Jesus, Isaac was carrying the wood on his back while his father, Abraham, was carrying the fire. He cried out, “Dad! Here is the wood and you have the fire. Where is the sacrifice?” Abraham gently responded to his son knowing what he was about to do, “Son, God will provide.” The ram was caught in the thicket and took the son’s place.
Now Jesus is carrying the wood of the Cross and he cries out to God, His Father, “Abba, Daddy! Here is the wood, and here is the fire (anger) of the people. Where is the sacrifice?” God responds with a whisper, “My Beloved Son… You are the sacrifice!” Jesus says, “Your will be done.” God allows us to sacrifice his Son.
So both father and son will die.
When we dare to eat the body and blood of Jesus, we become God’s daughters and sons. We will either watch our beloved ones die, which is really death itself, or we become like Jesus… the sacrifice. We die.
Like John the Baptist, we are not worthy to receive Jesus. We need to be healed. Our black coal needs to radiate Christ within us. Sometimes, I say to Jesus, “Lord I am not worthy to receive you, but only say the word and my soul will be healed of… my doubt… my addictions… my depression… my anxiety… my bitterness… my unforgiveness… my jealousy… my need to control… my lack of generosity…” Then I can help renew the face of the earth.
Soul healing comes through the fire of the Holy Spirit, the Blood of the Lamb.
“Lord I am not worthy to receive you, but only say the word and my soul will be healed.” Jesus needs to heal us, so that the Jesus in us will attract others. It is Jesus working through us, and it is not because we are worthy.
All of us, with Jesus in our bodies and souls, cry out to the world:
We are one body, one body in Christ
And we do not stand-alone
We are one body, one body in Christ
And he came that we might have life.
~When you eat my body and you eat my blood
I will live in you, and you will live in my love. (2X)
Table of Plenty – John Michael Talbot
Truly, the Mass never ends, we take it with us. Thanks be to God!
God is Love. God is Good…
All the Time!