Daily Reflection
July 16th, 2003
Howie Kalb, S.J.
Jesuit Community
Click here for a photo of and information on this writer.

Exodus 3:1-6, 9-12
Psalm 103:1-2, 3-4, 6-7
Matthew 11:25-27

At first reading, it would seem that today’s Gospel is somehow at odds with the purpose of Creighton University.  Jesus is praising his Father for “although you have hidden these things from the wise and learned you have revealed them to the childlike.”  Our students and professors show signs of intellectual ability and curiosity or they wouldn’t be here.  But if they grow wise and learned does that mean God will hide theological truths from them?  In accordance with our reading it would seem to be advantageous to remain childlike so the Lord would reveal greater truths to us.

However, Jesus is a teacher.  He would appreciate the importance of scholarship.  He would interact with people who were curious to learn.  It was only the people who thought they knew-it-all he couldn’t tolerate.  That’s why he found the Pharisees so objectionable. They had all the answers and didn’t need a young rabbi to teach them.  They claimed to know exactly what the Messiah would look like when he came.  Unfortunately, Jesus didn’t fit their blueprint.   So they crucified him.

The challenge for us is to realize that we don’t have all the answers.  Instead of pretending infallibility when we disagree with others we ought to remain humble and inquisitive enough to listen in the hopes of learning something more.  It is the disposition and intention that makes all the difference.

For example, in this life we can never know God as he is.  We must be comfortable with the fact that he is infinite and we are finite.  With our finite intellects we can know only a small portion of God’s personality at any one time.  At times we know God as “all-just.”  At other times we understand he is “all-merciful.”  But we can never know him as both these extremes at the same time.  Yet that is who God is.  Therefore with our limited intelligence we can only discover and attain caricatures of God’s personality.  But with faith to balance our human understanding, God will little by little further reveal his true self to us.  And this he will do in his own time and in his own way so long as we believe and trust in him.

So with Jesus, let us praise the Father since he made us childlike and thank him for giving us the gift of faith.  Then be convinced that our faith will continue to expand our understanding of the Almighty.  But it will only be in eternity, if we persevere, that he will enable us to know him as he is.  

Click on the link below to send an e-mail response
to the writer of this reflection.

Collaborative Ministry Office Guestbook