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Reflecting on the Face of Christ

I would like to continue on the theme of encountering God by setting other things aside and finding the “desert” in which to focus on Him. During the Last Supper, the Apostle Philip makes a request of Jesus, “Lord, show us the Father and we will be satisfied.”(Jn 14:8) Jesus responds, “ How can you say ‘Show us the Father?’ Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father in me?...Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father in me.” (Jn 14: 9-11) In his book The Apostles, Pope Benedict uses this exchange to remind us that to know the Face of God we must contemplate the Face of Jesus. He goes on to tell us how important this spiritual exercise is. If we do not study the true Face of Jesus, then we are inclined to envision Jesus as a reflection of ourselves. We make Him in our image rather than making ourselves over in His image.

The True Face of Jesus transcends politics, nationalities, or any other arbitrary divisions made by man. The Face of Jesus should unite all of us just as He united the diverse band of the Twelve Apostles. The success of the apostolic community stemmed from their willingness to set aside their own agendas and preconceived notions and take Jesus as the source of Truth.

I think this is an idea that I should mull over before the Blessed Sacrament. There in Eucharistic Adoration I can see the Face of Christ before me. With the gift of His grace, I can better see Him as He really is, and not how I wish or presume Him to be.


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