Praying Towards Sunday
Was it simpler to hear God’s message in biblical times? Or were the people more attuned to listening to God? In our cyber age, we get a lot of news and messages to buy new products that will do all kind of miracles for us and if we are lucky transform us. We can find prayers for friends and request of same. Yet something seems missing. Sure we stay in touch with people who we never see and are far away and that is good. However, the very personal intimate feeling is lost. I have a friend who takes the time to write personal notes and cards, handwritten and they become very precious to me. She takes time out from her busy schedule to spend alone time with her friends.
In Acts we are told of a very personal encounter. Philip was told by an angel of the Lord to go towards Jerusalem, which he did without any hesitation. I wonder how many of us would just get going, even if we knew that the message was not a scam. Do we miss opportunities to proclaim the good news of God’s love for all? Are we becoming overly careful and correct by missing opportunities to share our beliefs? It is a great story not just of obedience on Philip’s part and the quest for knowledge by the Eunuch. What is particularly noteworthy is that Phillip did not hesitate to teach and convert him, since this was taboo in the Jewish tradition. For Philip this did not matter since Jesus had taught that love reaches everyone no matter who they were.
We are reminded in the Gospel that Jesus is the vine and we are the branches. Branches need to be pruned in order for the next crop to be plentiful. Often grafting takes place to give variety to the grapes. The root does not change but the vine and branches must in order to be fruitful. This is us! We need to invite and nurture each other and those who feel unfulfilled and lonely. What a great opportunity we have right now, to be like Philip to interpret God’s word of love and also be the branches that are willing to be pruned and grafted.