Daily Reflection

From a Creighton Student's Perspective

May 23, 2011
by

Teresa Seale

Senior, English, with a Specialization in Creative Writing,
and Theater Double Major

Acts 14:5-18
Ps 115:1-2, 3-4, 15-16
Jn 14:21-26

“Whoever has my commandments and observes them
is the one who loves me.
Whoever loves me will be loved by my Father,
and I will love him and reveal myself to him.” -John 14:21

After the crowds exclaimed that Barnabas and Paul were gods, they “tore their garments when they heard this and rushed out into the crowd.”  They were frustrated enough to shout, to rip their clothes.  They had been working to preach the Gospel, but the crowd wouldn’t listen.  Even after the Apostles tried to shout the Truth to them, the crowds still offered sacrifice.  The Apostles just wanted to be heard!  It may have taken great self-control not to try and physically shake these people into believing.  But they can’t force it.  We can never force someone to understand.  And God never forces us to understand his love.

Christ says in the Gospel that he will “reveal” himself to those who love him.  The more God is revealed to us, the greater our capacity to love.  “Whoever loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and reveal myself to him.”  The Father’s revelation of his love in the Person of Jesus Christ is the greatest Revelation thus far.  And when Christ says he will make himself known to us, he will do so tenderly, as a sweet surprise.

When I prayed tonight, I felt the gentle power of God speaking to me, “Ah, you are beautiful…Ah, you are lovely.  Your eyes are doves!” (Song of Songs 4:1).  When I heard that unexpected whisper, I felt radiant with the tender revelation of his love.  He is gentle.  He is always gentle.  He never forces it upon me.

Sometimes I get so frustrated with my inability to hear his voice or to understand his Word or know where is at work in my life.  I want to throw things, to kick, to scream, to shout.  Often I am frustrated with other people because they won’t listen to me, they don’t feel his love, and they seem to be missing it.  I become afraid that my work, whether my personal prayer life or my daily work as a Christian, is not good enough.  I might heal thousands of crippled people and never see the fruit of my labor.

But God is not as impatient as I am.  He knows when I am ready to receive more of his love.  He is always widening my heart in preparation for him.  He is there when I am frustrated and don’t feel him.  And he is with the people to whom I witness even when I am afraid they will never know him.  His work is greater than I understand, but he reveals it to me tenderly a little more every day. 

“The Lord is my Shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.”

 

Editor's Note: This is Teresa's last reflection with us, as she graduated in May. We ask you to keep her in your prayers as she serves as a missionary in Honduras this summer, and into next school year when she will be attending graduate school in London for Filmmaking and for Creative Writing.


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