FOR TODAY Read this quote from "The Quest of the Historical Jesus," by Albert Schweitzer: He comes to us as One unknown, without a name, as of old, by the lakeside, He came to those men who knew Him not. He speaks to us the same words: "Follow thou me!" and sets us to the tasks which He has to fulfill for our time. He commands. And to those who obey Him, whether they be wise or simple, He will reveal himself in the toils, the conflicts, the sufferings which they shall pass through in His fellowship, and, as an ineffable mystery, they shall learn in their own experience Who He is. This quote comes from one of the early theological pioneers who dedicated his life and scholarship to trying to give sharper contours to the “historical Jesus." Not everyone on this quest came to the same conclusion and not all of the scholarly assertions were found to be solid. Nevertheless, in this quote we can hear the witness of many of our great mystics, saints, or sages. These leaders have affirmed over and over again that Jesus comes to us in our suffering but also comes to us as mystery. In response to such powerful experiences, a posture of profound silence often seems appropriate. We know that words fail when we try to explain or discuss such intimate and life-changing moments no matter how much we long to do so. And yet, those moments do not leave us the same. Recall to mind how many times Peter had been with Jesus, followed Jesus, and yet when Jesus appeared after the Resurrection on the beach, telling Peter to cast his fishing nets “into deeper waters," Peter remained dubious. When he pulled in more fish than the boat could hold, Peter’s experience of the profound mystery of Jesus led him to exclaim, “depart from me, for I am a sinful man” (Luke 5:8).
FOR FURTHER REFLECTION Have you had an experience of Jesus that remains beyond explanation, beyond words? How did that experience change you? If you cannot recall such an experience, imagine what one might be like. Perhaps a sentence would help spark your imagination: “In the presence of Jesus, I would feel ______________."
JESUS This is our theme for our last week of devotions: Jesus. Rather than offer technical answers, orthodox dogma or theological doctrine, let's give this week to our sanctified imagination and ponder our own creed about Jesus. Let us trust that doing so is not for the lack of faith or heretical inclination, but that it awakens our desire to more deeply cultivate our response to the question, who do I say Jesus is? Find all previous daily devotionals here
Join us for our 50th Jubilee Celebration events, December 3-5, online. Details can be found here: www.diocgc.org/just-mercy-just-jesus.