He is the One, not me!

John the Baptist had been the star on the stage before Jesus appeared on the scene. Everyone was flocking to him to be baptized. His words were fiery, and his dress code was an unmistakable sign to the people that what he came to do was serious. It was not business as usual. But when Jesus arrived on the scene, he humbly shifted all attention from himself to Jesus, saying: “Behold the Lamb of God. I baptize you only with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit. My job is to testify that he is the Son of God. From now on, you should all be following him because He is the One, not me!

John the Baptist knew his purpose in life. He did not have to struggle over the center stage with Jesus Christ, his cousin. He was not bothered that people were going to leave him to follow The Lamb who takes away the sins of the world. He had lived up to his calling and the time came for him to leave the stage. Having been baptized now, Our Lord moves onto the stage of the world to bring light in the midst of darkness, raise up the downtrodden, wipe away the tears of those in sorrow, and bring joy to those depressed. He would do all this through the power of the Holy Spirit. It is his time, the time of Salvation. It was his purpose: to bring back to God all God’s children, letting them know how much each person mattered to the Father in Heaven!

How important it is to know what we can do and what we cannot do! How important it is to recognize when our time is over, and the time of the other person has come! How important it is to know when we should step up and take charge rather than expect others to do what we should be doing! How important it is to realize that no one can do for us what has been assigned to us to do in this world!  How important it is for us to know when our time is up in a particular aspect of life so that we can hand over the torch to the person who has been designated to rise at that time.

Our Lord has begun his ministry in earnest as the Son of God. Through him, the father will shine his glory upon the world, in our lives. It is his work. And now is the time. As we enter the ordinary time, let us walk with our Lord and allow him to shine the father’s glory in our hearts. It is my prayer for all of us. Amen

Fr Cornelius Okeke