Now I See

A Resurrectionist Vocation Minute for March 19, 2023 – 4th Sunday of Lent

Now I see

In the fifth episode of the first season of the popular TV series called “The Chosen” – an imaginative portrayal of the life of Jesus and His first disciples – there’s a conversation which takes place between Jesus and Thomas (who later will become Thomas the Apostle), who is introduced as the caterer hired for the Wedding Feast of Cana.

After wine runs out, Jesus is standing with Thomas in the room with the six stone water jars, and He tells the servants to fill the jars to the brim.  Thomas expresses his frustration at this instruction – which doesn’t make any sense to him – and Jesus says:

Jesus: “I know of a man like you in Capernaum.  Always counting.  Always measuring.” 
Thomas: “That’s my job.  The people will think I have not done well tonight.”
Jesus: “Join me.  And I will show you a new way to count and measure, a different way of seeing time.”
Thomas: “Go with you where?  I don’t understand.” 
Jesus: “Keep watching.”

This episode came to mind for me when I think about today’s Gospel reading, which revolves around the topic of “sight.”  Although the Letter to the Hebrews tells us that “faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen” [Hebrews 11:1], faith is, in another sense, a way of “seeing”.  As the late Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI said in the beginning of his encyclical Deus Caritas Est, (God is Love):

“Being a Christian is not the result of an ethical choice or lofty idea, but the encounter with an event, a person, which gives life a new horizon and a decisive direction.”1

We see in the man born blind – who receives his sight as a result of encountering Jesus and following His instruction to wash (symbolic of baptism) – the experience of each one of us in our own journey from spiritual blindness to sight.

No matter what our vocation may be, we will eventually reach the point where things just don’t make any sense.  But in these moments, we discover our vocation.  Because when we can no longer see the way forward, we have no choice – if we want to continue – but to listen, to believe the One who is calling us.  It is this act of faith that reopens the horizon, and enables us to see things as they really are.

“By our vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience, we dedicate and consecrate ourselves totally to the Risen Christ in the religious life. This dedication entails an act of faith whereby we respond to God’s call to give ourselves completely with all our talents, abilities and powers to him, to the Church, and to the Congregation.”

1 Benedict XVI, Pope. “Deus Caritas Est.” Accessed March 12, 2022    

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