May the Lord give you peace in the Holy Spirit. It is on 24th August 2023. We reflect on Revelations 21:9-14; and the Gospel from John 1:45-51.
We celebrate the feast day of St. Bartholomew, the Apostle. He preached in Arabia and India. He was martyred being scourged alive in Armenia. We too are invited to be the witnesses of the Gospel in each situation.
Jesus applauded him for his honesty. The pages of truth are scribbled in the ink of honesty. Sincerity brings us closer to the truth. Our opinions cannot be coloured with prejudice. We can witness greater things in openness and beyond personal reservation. Without humility, we cannot love humanity.
Jesus complimented him saying, “Here is a true child of Israel. There is no duplicity in him.” (John 1:47). Jesus promised him greater things for his transparency, honesty, and sincerity in knowing Him and loving Him.
In the gospel, we see Nathanael (Nathaniel) being brought to Jesus and we read of his declaration of faith because of what Jesus said to him. It is believed that this Nathanael is St. Bartholomew we honour today. How often do we make an effort to introduce someone to be introduced to Jesus. Unless we experience Jesus personally and intimately, we cannot inspire and lead someone to Jesus. Our personal encounter is possible in the Sacraments and in the downtrodden.
No matter what others say about us, we are what we are in front of Jesus because He knows our inner hearts and disposition to the Truth. Philip was the one who took Nathaniel to Jesus.
We are prejudiced about some people and form an opinion and hold something against the other. We even go to an extent to demolish the names of others because of our sinful prejudice through our phone conversations and personal encounters.
We must know the truth and that the truth will set us free. Jesus is our truth and let us be extremely careful about those who spread the people’s stereotypes and prejudices. As we have accepted the Lord Jesus as our personal Savior, let us lead others to meet who Jesus really is. We cannot pretend to be good and holy for a long time. Our true worth before God is known to God alone. God sees us through and through. Let not our prejudices about the other persons blind the true vision of God in our lives. Let us use every opportunity to share the Word of God with someone and bring a new person to Christ every day. This indeed is the obligation laid on our shoulders.