“Jesus said to the Jews:
‘You sent messengers to John,
and he gave his testimony to the truth:
not that I depend on human testimony…
my testimony is greater than John’s…”
These daily FFF reflections, often using the scriptures of the day as a starting-point, are not intended to be a scriptural commentary.
I’m no scripture scholar.
Instead I prepare for writing these reflections by spending 24 hours living with the scriptures of the following day, reading them several times, praying with them and reading the gospel a couple of times for the Lectio Divina recording – letting words and phrases come to mind as I seek to live a day consciously, intentionally, deliberately and abundantly.
In several Bible passages people are told to take the scroll (on which the word of God is written), and eat it.
I like that: each day I feel as though I am eating what I have read, truly digesting the scriptures.
When I do this writing these reflections flow relatively easily and I find myself sharing not what I think might be helpful for others, but my personal experience of God-with-me in a day.
Throughout yesterday, in a variety of situations, and prompted by today’s gospel, I had repeated aha moments realising just how dependant I am on human testimony.
In my healthier moments I can be aware of the trap of following crowds or fashions, but I’m often shocked realising how much what others say influences my own thinking and acting.
Then I might decide to become more aware of my dangerous dependencies, deciding to be independent, quickly realising that my adult self prefers inter-dependance, and (even more fundamentally) an acknowledge and lived dependance on God.
Earlier today I was in Nazareth House home for the aged and noticed many of the residents using walking frames. There is something very honest about their visible dependance. There are some who might refuse to be dependant in this way in public so they are confined to their rooms. But those who acknowledge their dependance are able to move much much more freely.
As I write now I am grateful for their witness reminding me that we are all dependants. This powerlessness is a part of our human condition.
And when I acknowledge my dependance on the one who is greater than John the Baptist, I experience liberation.
“God, grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change,
The courage to change the things I can,
And the wisdom to know the difference.”