“You know how to interpret the appearance of the earth and the sky; why do you not know how to interpret the present time” (Lk 12:56).
Reading this verse brought two memories from my childhood. The first one is from when my friend Steve and I as kids were interested in reading the natural signs and weather patterns, and we enjoyed watching our local weatherman, Hilton Kaderli. each night forecasting the weather. Another memory was with my cousin Danny. We were at my Uncle Pierre and Aunt Claudette’s house one afternoon and we saw a storm rising. We headed to the road and started running as fast as we could in the opposite direction to see how far we could get before the storm caught us, and when it did we walked home, sucking in air, being pelted by the rain, and enjoyed a good soaking. Steve, Danny, and I read the signs of the earth and the sky, but we didn’t pay to much attention to things of the spirit.
By not only the teachings of Jesus, but by his public actions Jesus was revealing some powerful signs that God was in their midst. Jesus taught and preached on his own authority, he cast out demons, forgave sins, healed people, met and ate with sinners and women. These were amazing signs that the Messiah was in their midst, yet there were those who did not see, would not see, rationalized away that he could not be who he said he was. Though there were those who did see, did hear, and did believe.
Because they did so, some two thousand years later, Jesus speaks to us again. The stories and encounters of Jesus have been preserved, passed on generation after generation. Do we see his presence working in our lives? Do we see coincidences or God-incidents? Life is busy and fast passed, but we need to make some time each day to stop and reflect, take some deep breaths, and ask God to help us in reviewing the past twenty four hours to notice how he has been involved and engaged in our life.
Jesus, help us to be still for a moment so that we can acknowledge what we are grateful for and recall some God-incidents no matter how small. Jesus help us to be aware of how much you have been present to us in our daily experiences, and thank you for being with us, even when we have been distracted and indifferent.
For those times that we have refused or failed to recognize your closeness, especially in your presence in others seeking our help, forgive and assist us in being more aware and more intentional with following your will today and tomorrow. This moment with you truly is the time of fulfillment. The kingdom of heaven is at hand. Let us repent, believe in you, go in peace and proclaim the Gospel.
Photo credit: Jack McKee – a moment of rest, enjoying family and God’s creation, Christmas 2010