January 14, 2024
Second Sunday in Ordinary Time
Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter, was one of the two who heard John and followed Jesus. He first found his own brother Simon and told him, “We have found the Messiah” — which is translated Christ —. Then he brought him to Jesus. John 1:40–42
Andrew was a follower of Saint John the Baptist until John directed him to Jesus. One day John saw Jesus walk by and pointed to Jesus, telling Andrew and another disciple, “Behold, the Lamb of God.” The two disciples followed after Jesus. After spending the day with Jesus, Andrew was so impressed that the next day he excitedly went to find his brother, Simon Peter, to tell him about Jesus. As is mentioned in the passage above, he enthusiastically tells Peter, “We have found the Messiah.” Then, once Peter meets Jesus, Peter also becomes His disciple.
A similar experience occurs between the brothers Philip and Nathanael (see John 1:43–51). Jesus calls Philip to follow Him, and he does. After coming to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, Philip goes to tell his brother Nathanael that he has found “the one about whom Moses wrote in the law, and also the prophets.” Nathanael believes and follows our Lord. Thus, a series of conversions began after John the Baptist gave testimony that Jesus was the “Lamb of God.”
Though we can be certain that Jesus did not need the testimony of John the Baptist to convert Andrew, nor the testimony of Andrew to convert Simon Peter, nor the testimony of Philip to convert Nathanael, this is how it happened. Jesus chose to use these three to bring about the conversion of others.
In God’s divine plan of salvation, He regularly uses the mediation of others to bring forth the conversion of hearts. We see this on many levels. First and foremost, He uses our Blessed Mother as the Mediatrix of Grace to bring forth His grace upon us all. She is the instrument and Jesus is the source. Through her mediation, there are other saints who act as intercessors. And there are countless angels who also act as distributors of God’s grace and mercy. God is the source of all but uses the heavenly hosts to bring forth His grace upon us all.
The same is true within our earthly existence. In addition to the numerous angels and saints who act as intercessors and mediators, God uses each one of us to bring about His Kingdom here and now in the lives of many. Every time we speak God’s words or witness to God through our actions, we become instruments of God’s mercy. And if we fully commit ourselves to the divine will, there are many who will be converted by God’s grace through us.
Reflect, today, upon the holy and sacred calling you have received to act as a mediator of God’s infinite grace and mercy. First, think about the many people God wants to touch through you. Also think about the fact that those people might never be drawn to God if you fail to act. God can do all things and touch many people in varied ways, but the fact remains that He does want to use you for His mission. Say “Yes” to that mission so that you, like many others, will share in the glorious calling of being an intercessor and a mediator of God’s grace.
Most glorious Lord, You are abundantly generous in Your grace and mercy and desire to bestow Your love on all people. Please use me for Your divine mission of evangelizing the world. I say “Yes” to You, dear Lord. Use me as You will. Jesus, I trust in You.