Sunday, January 07, 2018
MONDAY, BAPTISM OF THE LORD
January 8, 2018 – MONDAY, BAPTISM OF THE LORD
Feast. Cycle B. White.
Is 55: 1-11 / 1 Jn 5: 1 -9 / Mk 1: 7- 11
FROM THE 1ST READING: Is 55: 6- 7, 10- 11
Seek Yahweh while he may be found; call on him while he is near.. Let the wicked abandon his way, let him forsake his thoughts, let him turn to Yahweh for he will have mercy, for our God is generous in giving....
As the rain and the snow come down from the heavens and do not return till they have watered the earth, making it yield seed for the sower and food for others to eat, so is my word that goes forth out of my mouth: It will not return to me idle, but it shall accomplish my will, the purpose for which it has been sent.
GOSPEL READING: Mk 1: 7 -11
John preached to the people saying, "After me comes one who is more powerful than I am; I have baptized you with water, but he will baptize you in the Holy Spirit. As for me, I am not worthy to bend down and untie his sandals."
At that time Jesus came from Nazareth, a town of Galilee, and was baptized by John at the Jordan. And the moment he came up out of the water, heaven opened before him and he saw the Spirit coming down on him like a dove. And these words were heard from heaven, "You are my Son, the Beloved, the One I have chosen."
The Baptism of the Lord is significant for us for many reasons.
Foremost is the reminder of the profound reality that our baptism makes us all children of God, thereby making us all adopted brothers and sisters of Jesus, the Beloved and only Begotten Son of God, which allows us to call his Father our Father.
Can we then say that the Father is well pleased with us in the same manner that he is pleased with his Son Jesus? Do we have a deep desire to imitate Jesus in his intimacy with his Father? In baptism one receives new life in Christ. In baptism one becomes a real participant in the Paschal Mystery of Christ, in his passion, death and resurrection. Do we see our lives as lives of true followers of Christ?
Second, baptism is our initiation into the Catholic Christian community founded by Christ.. Through baptism we begin to belong to a faith tradition that professes Christ as our Brother and Savior. In this regard, the purpose and meaning of our lives become our fidelity to Jesus who is represented in the least of his brethren. How Christ-like have we been in our relations with our Christian community? How much compassion and concern do we show the neglected, the needy and outcasts of society?
Finally, baptism inherently includes a call to mission. It is not enough that we are children of God and that we belong to the Christian community. What matters is how much such realities translate into action in our daily lives.
We are sent forth to proclaim the reign of God in our midst. This is real and effective when done in deed rather than in mere word. We are not self proclaimed messiahs: rather we are called by Christ himself to participate in the salvific work and mission of Jesus.
The sinless Jesus humbled himself in being baptized by John in the Jordan like his fellows. His mission and life are encouraged and recognized in the blessing of the Father and the Holy Spirit: "You are my Son, the Beloved, the One I have chosen." (Mk 1: 11)
The Father uttered his joy and approval of his Son in whom he was well pleased. This surely gives Jesus confidence knowing his Father's recognition and blessing.
This is equally true for us. We do our work better and more joyfully when we know we are trusted. We feel encouraged with the trust given us. In baptism God accepts us and missions us with his love and grace to proclaim his love, mercy and justice.
FINALLY, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our prayers and for those who need our prayers the most.
Have a good day!
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