Hey everybody! How are all y’all? I hope everyone is doing as well as myself. I’m doing awesome! The sun is shining, the guys are working on the house and the garage, all my stuff is here, the cicadas and birds are singing, the temperature is perfect. Life is good! Leaving school this morning after my writing class (if you have some hobby you absolutely should take a class!), I saw something on one of the bulletin boards that really intrigued me and blessed me. It was a picture of Jesus as the Teacher, and another pic of the first disciple. Find a glass of something cool, find a comfy spot to relax a minute, and let’s talk about that first disciple!
The first disciple. What comes to your mind? Who were they? How did they meet Jesus? What made them follow Him? How close were they? Did they have any influence on what He did or where He went? Did they have a lot written about them in Scripture, or in the Tradition and writings of the early Church fathers and Doctors? Hmmm…
I can tell you they knew Jesus from the very beginning. I can tell you they put their heart and soul into knowing Him, knowing His ways, knowing His Father. I can tell you they ate with Him, slept near Him, walked and talked with Him, ministered with Him, saw His first miracle. I can tell you they were with Him all the way to the Cross. I can tell you they were believing, hope against hope, in His Resurrection even as His body lay in the grave.
So, who do you think? John? Peter? James? Matthew? Joseph?
Let me give you some more clues. This disciple never wrote a Gospel. This disciple has very few words recorded in the Scriptures, and yet the ones recorded are powerful, leaving a lasting legacy and example. They left a challenge to obey Jesus Christ with every fiber of one’s being, every movement of one’s soul, with every ounce of will, grit and determination; yet with all the love in our hearts. Who do you think?
I’ll give you a quote, at the risk of completely giving them away. “Do whatever He tells you to do.” I’ll give you references later, if you still need them. How are we doing with this?
This disciple knew the Scriptures, knew God the Father, knew God the Son, knew the Holy Spirit. Here’s another quote, again references will follow.
“His mercy is for those who fear Him from generation to generation. He has shown strength with His arm; He has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts. He has brought down the powerful from their thrones, and lifted up the lowly; He has filled the hungry with good things, and sent the rich away empty.”
Do we know God this way? Do we understand His tremendous mercy toward us? Do we remember the mercy of Jesus – the woman caught in adultery, the woman at the well, the sinful woman who anointed Him with perfume, the man at the Pool of Bethesda, blind Bartimaues, Zacchaeus, the paralytic carried by four friends, the woman whose son He brought back to life on the way to the funeral? Do we exercise humility toward Him? Or do we walk in pride, ignoring Him at best, defying Him at worst? Are we one of the “lowly” or “hungry” ones, trusting Him to provide what we need? Or are we hopeless, not even asking for His help?
‘ll give you one last quote, to show the position of praise our hearts should be in.
“My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for He has looked with favor on the lowliness of His servant.
Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed; for the Mighty One has done great things for me, and holy is His name.”
What has He done for you? Have you said “Thank You!” or given Him public praise for the greatness of His mercy and help and blessings? Do you rejoice in God, is He your savior? Do you know how much He’s blessed you? Do worship Him in His holiness? Mary did. She’s the first disciple. The quotations are all from the first chapter of the Gospel of Luke.
Do you even have a relationship with Jesus? Do you wish you could? You can experience the blessings, the miracles, the life that only Jesus can give you. Find a pastor or priest. They will be so happy to help you begin or develop your relationship with Him. You can be a disciple just like Mary.