March 20 – Finding Jesus
John 7:1-2, 10-19, 25-30
After this Jesus went about in Galilee; he would not go about in Judea, because the Jews sought to kill him. Now the Jews’ feast of Tabernacles was at hand.
When his brethren had gone up to the feast, then he also went up, not publicly but in private. The Jews were looking for him at the feast, and saying, “Where is he?” And there was much muttering about him among the people. While some said, “He is a good man,” others said, “No, he is leading the people astray.” Yet for fear of the Jews no one spoke openly of him.
About the middle of the feast Jesus went up into the temple and taught. The Jews marveled at it, saying, “How is it that this man has learning, when he has never studied?” So Jesus answered them, “My teaching is not mine, but his who sent me; if any man’s will is to do his will, he shall know whether the teaching is from God or whether I am speaking on my own authority. He who speaks on his own authority seeks his own glory; but he who seeks the glory of him who sent him is true, and in him there is no falsehood. Did not Moses give you the law? Yet none of you keeps the law. Why do you seek to kill me?”
Some of the people of Jerusalem therefore said, “Is not this the man whom they seek to kill? And here he is, speaking openly, and they say nothing to him! Can it be that the authorities really know that this is the Christ? Yet we know where this man comes from; and when the Christ appears, no one will know where he comes from.” So Jesus proclaimed, as he taught in the temple, “You know me, and you know where I come from? But I have not come of my own accord; he who sent me is true, and him you do not know. I know him, for I come from him, and he sent me.” So they sought to arrest him; but no one laid hands on him, because his hour had not yet come.
Jesus was under fire between those who wanted to kill Him and those who questioned His authority. He wanted to keep the Feast of the Tabernacles, but did not travel with His disciples. The people expected to see Jesus with his disciples and questioned where He was when they did not find Him. Many times, we too look for Jesus and struggle to find Him. We may feel abandoned and may question if He really is available or there for us. We may feel like we have been led astray, but we must trust in God’s perfect timing for us in our lives. Even if we don’t think that Jesus is there with us, He is always in the background working in ways and doing things we may not understand.
When Jesus comes forward and begins teaching in the temple, the Jews are in awe of His knowledge, yet they still doubt that His teaching is God’s Word. Jesus can only teach the ways of His Father. When we read the beautiful words that Jesus gave us, like the Sermon on the Mount or the numerous parables to ponder, we must not only look at them as just beautiful words, but also as commands which we should follow all the days of our lives. God sent His only Son to save us and show us the way back to Him, not to condemn us and push us away. Do not condemn Jesus for speaking the truth, like the Pharisees did, just because we don’t want to admit we are sinful. Instead, listen to His word and follow His commands. Have faith and believe that He is the Son of God.
Lent in Action:
If you do not see Jesus working in your life, pray to Him to reveal Himself and guide your path.
Jesus, there are times when I feel like that I can not find you when I need you most. I struggle on my own and need you to lead me towards your Father. Please come and guide me all the days of my life. Show me the direction you want me to go, and I will follow You. I ask this in your holy Name. Amen.