Are you the one?

Scripture      Matt 11:2-11



When John the Baptist heard about the deeds of Christ,

he sent word by his disciples who said to Jesus,

“Are you the one who is to come, or are we to wait for another?”

Jesus answered them, “Go and tell John what you hear and see:

The blind receive their sight, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed,

the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the poor have good news brought to them.

And blessed is anyone who takes no offence at me.”



Last week John the Baptist proclaimed from the stark Judean desert that there was One coming who was greater than he and who would guide us by the fire of the Spirit into a brand new way of seeing and being. He was only the forerunner, the prophet, sent to prepare the way, mandated with the mission to announce that the day was drawing nearer. Prepare your hearts. Soften the divisions and break down the barriers, roll out the carpet for the expectant arrival of the King of Peace. Yes, John proclaims, a way of justice and peace and love is coming upon the earth and we are the recipients of this new kingdom. The new WAY was going to be given in the person of Jesus, the Christ. Now, this week John finds himself imprisoned and seems to be, like us, somewhat puzzled by the turn of events, and wonders, have I really been on course.


From within the dark and gloom of his prison cell, John wants desperately to hope. “Is Jesus really the Messiah? Did I truly point the way to the one who is to come? Jesus might have simply answered, ‘Yes, John, you got it right.” But because Jesus is the Christ, it is very important to Jesus that John and his disciples who will continue to carry the message understand what it means. Calling Jesus ‘Messiah’ carried a lot of baggage that ill-suited who Jesus knew himself to be and what it was that he was called to do. Jesus knew that he needed to respond with an answer that would direct people to see and understand his call from another perspective. Jesus was not a ‘Messiah’ that would rule and lord it over others and overthrow the Roman kingdom. His saving power manifested quite differently than the status quo had been anticipating.


Jesus’ answer is much better than a simple “Yes. I am the one.” The very ministry of Jesus is John’s ‘yes’ answer. Jesus says: Look rather to the new life and new hope that have been happening all over the place: the blind see, the lame walk, the sick are cured, the dead are raised to new life, and the poor hear the good news. Indeed, Jesus was the one whom God had sent. Those whose lives had been shattered by illness are being healed. The poor who had been forced to live on the fringes of society heard the good news of welcome into God’s kingdom.


Jesus‘ whole ministry is pointing to a way of living LOVE that can embrace all persons. Jesus and John would be directing us today …  “When you see these kind of things happening today please recognize that I am in your midst.” Jesus wants to make quite clear that the message and the mission is all about compassion. God lives within us and we will experience those gentle ‘promptings’ to be agents of compassion and kindness and reach out the poor and most needy around us.  


In these weeks before Christmas as we stroll through the malls and grocery stores, we are often invited to give to the poor and the needy in our cities and neighborhoods. I wonder if dropping a donation in the Salvation Army kettle or donating to the Christmas food drive or sharing in our Parish Outreach would be a more meaningful way to say - with our lives -  that we are disciples and followers of this Jesus, the Messiah, the Holy One, sent by God… to be amongst us … within us... for all time!


There are so many unique ways that the ‘secret’ giving and ‘invisible acts’ of kindness and generosity are manifested in this season and beyond. As other ‘Christ’s’ we are challenged to serve our brothers and sisters and do the same…

  • ‘The blind see.” Where are you bringing ‘sight’ to the blind, guiding another through a spiritual dark night of the soul? How are you living your faith in the mystery and darkness when much of the journey seems obscure and lost?

  • ‘The lame walk.” So many are paralyzed, not just in body, but in their emotions and trapped lifestyles. Can you offer a freeing word, a program that guides them through a release and a recovery? ‘Get up and walk… go on with your journey. Be set free. Surrender your ego.

  • ‘The sick are cured.’  The healing energy of God’s light and love still today releases the toxins from our cells and restores us to wellness and wholeness. Be open and receptive to healing ministries.

  • ‘The dead are raised to new life.” Blessed are those who walk with the poor, the lonely, and the depressed ones who seem to be wandering in a land of deep darkness. Many of these are the chosen ones called to abide in the Mystery of God’s nearness in a great poverty of spirit. Hope returns and they breakthrough in a birth into an expanded consciousness that is filled with a ‘knowing’ of God-one-with-me! This is being raised to a new life! 


When these same manifestations that Jesus worked in his time start to increase and multiply around the earth TODAY … we will truly be celebrating Advent-Christmas - the season of God’s comings – and all of us will be filled with rejoicing! We can imagine the delight in the Trinity when we humans wake to this glorious message and start spreading the good cheer and comfort and inclusion that is so much the fulfillment of the Messiah’s mission on earth. “They shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and sighing shall fell away. (Isaiah 35:10)


Let us go forth this week into the world … proclaiming and rejoicing …. confident that our hope is healthy and strong and able to work ‘miracles’. Let’s go out there and tell the whole world that ‘THE ONE’ has come! Every time we proclaim the name “Jesus Christ,” we are in fact affirming that he is the one who offered John the Baptist every reason to hope that his life’s purpose had been fulfilled. Perhaps our lives will find greater fulfillment as we go beyond words and titles and seek ways to alleviate suffering and bring good news to the poor in Jesus’s name. Where does this ‘Good News’ send you?

Carrying Grace        Be strong. Fear not. Here is your God. I come bringing good news.




#1 arletteh 2010-12-12 17:00
I so often wish I had been with the disciples on the road to Emmaus!to hear what Scriptures Jesus quoted to explain his life.Last week, I experienced yet again Handel's "Messiah".Wow!M uch of this might have been used by Jesus:that unimaginably beautiful good news from Isaiah and other prophets(and later Matthew and Luke).It is a story to truly raise the dead, unstop the ears of the deaf,to restore sight to the blind,to make the desert bloom!What a story of faith is our story(Isaiah 7,11,52,53,60, 62, 65 and 61,from the latter of which Jesus chose his own mission).Contai ned in the Hebrew Scriptures was the tremendous, deep longing of the Jewish people for a Messiah , the One who would bring Peace: it is the longing of every human heart!May the Scriptures revive and nourish that longing during these final Advent days!Come,Lord Jesus, come!Live in us, that we may ,indeed be the one!Let the desert of our still remaining aridity bloom!Let us BE the good news!

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