After this Jesus went about in Galilee. He did not wish to go about in Judea because the Jews were looking for an opportunity to kill him. Now the Jewish festival of Booths was near. But after his brothers had gone to the festival, then he also went, not publicly but as it were in secret.
Now some of the people of Jerusalem were saying, “Is not this the man whom they are trying to kill? And here he is, speaking openly, but they say nothing to him! Can it be that the authorities really know that this is the Messiah? Yet we know where this man is from; but when the Messiah comes, no one will know where he is from.”
Then Jesus cried out as he was teaching in the temple, “You know me, and you know where I am from. I have not come on my own. But the one who sent me is true, and you do not know him. I know him, because I am from him, and he sent me.” Then they tried to arrest him, but no one laid hands on him, because his hour had not yet come.
Recently, I felt that a favorite on-line retailer had not been “true.” For almost 40 years, deliveries from this store have found my addresses. Now the shipper has changed their approach, necessitating travel to different drop sites. Grrr!
In today’s Gospel, when Jesus tells us “the one who sent me…is true,” he is not sharing an answer to a true-false quiz or a suggestion for a dependable retailer. The daily readings seem more ominous and Jesus repeatedly attests to his experience of Abba. Jesus knows the Father. Jesus comes from the Father and is sent to us. We are invited to believe: God is true, trustworthy, and authentic.
As Lent moves toward Holy Week, we pray to enter deeply into the sufferings of Jesus, a grace of the Third Week of the Spiritual Exercises. Might I also ask Jesus to help me trust that his Abba is true?
—Maureen M. Martin is a writer, spiritual director and hospice chaplain, living in Evanston, IL.
Lord, teach me to be generous.
Teach me to serve you as you deserve;
to give and not to count the cost,
to fight and not to heed the wounds,
to toil and not to seek for rest,
to labor and not to ask for reward,
save that of knowing that I do your will.
—Prayer for Generosity (St. Ignatius of Loyola)
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