In Awe and Wonder

3 June 2009. Wednesday of the 9th Week in Ordinary Time
Tobit 3, 1-17; Psalm 25; Mark 12, 18-27

The Gospel tells us that Jesus and the Jewish leaders were in conflict. The Gospel today speaks about questioning the belief in the resurrection and life after death. A group of Jewish leaders like the Sadducees did not believe in life after death. In response to their questions, Jesus displays a wisdom that shows their intention to “ensnare him in his speech” (v. 13). He was able to show their ‘shallow wisdom’ of Scripture, and showed them than the “God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob” was a God of the living. But disproving them bravely, Jesus elicits from the readers of Mark, a certain awe, amazement and wonder at His wisdom and love for His Father. Mark, the evangelist, hoped that those who were amazed, would follow Jesus till death.

In order for many of us to follow Jesus, we must first be full of awe and wonder, not just on the wisdom and miracles of Jesus, but the whole person of Jesus. The road to a greater knowledge of Jesus is through meditating or contemplating on the life of Jesus. When taking the Spiritual Exercises, St. Ignatius of Loyola urges the retreatant to ask for the grace of knowing Christ clearly, loving Him deeply and follow Him closely when the person begins contemplating on the Life of Christ. The mysteries of the rosary are supposed to be prayed about, so that in understanding who Jesus is, we may grow in love with Him and thus, lead us to follow Him closely and faithfully.

I believe, this is the primary objective of a prayer session, a recollection or a retreat. In these spiritual activities, we begin to appreciate what Jesus taught and did for us. We begin to see God’s faithful love to us, so that feeling loved, we may be able to assess our sinfulness and see how in synch or out of synch our lives are viz-a-viz the life of Jesus.

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