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  • Writer's pictureDavid Bent

What are you looking for? (31-07-23)

Psalm of Praise: Psalms 127:1-2

If the Lord does not build the house, the work of the builders is useless;

If the Lord does not protect the city, it does no good for the sentries to stand guard.

It is useless to work so hard for a living, getting up early and going to bed late.

For the Lord provides for those he loves, while they are asleep.


Bible Reading: John 1:35-39

The next day John was standing there again with two of his disciples, when he saw Jesus walking by. "There is the Lamb of God!" he said.

The two disciples heard him say this and went with Jesus.

Jesus turned, saw them following him, and asked, "What are you looking for?"

They answered, "Where do you live, Rabbi?" (This word means "Teacher.")

"Come and see," he answered.

So they went with him and saw where he lived, and spent the rest of that day with him.


A Reflection

To the people of Jesus’ time, John the Baptist was a traditional prophet, like those of the Old Testament, calling people to turn away from a sinful lifestyle and to turn back to God. He had a following of his own disciples who spent time in his company and learnt from him.


On this occasion John sees his cousin Jesus, who he recognises as the coming Lamb of God, and points him out to two of his disciples, one of which was Andrew. As these two disciples go to follow Jesus, he turns to them and asks, ‘What are you looking for?


I wonder how you would answer Jesus today if he were to ask it of you the same question. What are you looking for from Jesus?


When we follow Jesus he offers us forgiveness, peace, hope and abundant life both now and for eternity. But are these the only reasons for following Jesus?


The two disciples gave a seemingly strange reply to Jesus’ question. ‘Where do you live, Rabbi?’ they ask. The logic behind their question though, is that they were looking to be with Jesus, to spend time with him and to learn from him as their Rabbi, their teacher. They saw something in this new, radical teacher that they wanted to know more about, something that went beyond the more traditional teachings of John the Baptist.


Wherever we are in our Christian faith, there is always more that we can learn from Jesus. Things about his Kingdom and about our place in it. Things about his plans and purposes for us. Things we will only learn by spending time in his presence and by recognising his presence in the events around us. Things that might challenge any traditional views that we might currently hold on to.


Let us thank God for all that he offers us when we choose to follow him, and let us follow his invitation to, ‘Come and see’ all that he still has for us to discover and to learn.


A Prayer

Thank you, Lord Jesus, for all your many blessings.

Help me, as I follow you, and spend time in your presence,

to learn from you day by day.

Amen


To be in your presence

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