“You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.” - Mk 1:11
Over the past several weeks, we have read many stories surrounding the conception, birth, and infancy of Jesus. As we follow Him through the gospels, the elements of wonder and awe never leave. The baptism begins our season of Ordinary Time as Jesus embarks on his public ministry and invites us to ask ourselves, “How am I growing in love today towards myself and all those around me? Are my words and actions drawing me closer to Him?”
As the story unfolds we learn that Jesus is a servant to others. He does not use his power to dominate others, but to liberate and give them life. In our baptism, we are welcomed into a community of believers and called to be of generous service to others. This includes our families who nurture our becoming, friends who love us by choice, companions at work who share our burden and daily tasks, and strangers who welcome us into their midst. Growing in a loving relationship with Him is a continuous invitation of how we choose to respond to His love.
One longstanding tradition that centers me each time during mass is making the sign of the cross three times before the gospel. Within the movements, I would recite to myself, “Lord, penetrate my mind with your words, let it be spoken through my lips, and transform my heart.” In that moment of preparation, a sense of peace and readiness would restore within me, feeling comforted I have another chance to respond.
Lord, make me an instrument of your love. May I see each circumstance in my life as an opportunity to grow in Your love.
Reflected by Tam Lontok