Daily Reflection
From a Creighton Student's Perspective
of Creighton University's Online Ministries

March 31st, 2009

Patrick Carter

Junior; Justice and Socity Major


Nm 21:4-9
Ps 102:2-3, 16-18, 19-21
Jn 8:21-30

Weekly Guide for Daily Prayer

The Daily Reflections

Imagine if a country’s president was planning a birthday party for himself. He or she has reserved two of the finest chefs to cater the event, a grand ballroom has been reserved, and the most popular band in the country has changed its world tour schedule to play on the special evening. The spectacular night has come and the red carpet is laid out to greet freshly polished black limousines at the street. Leaders of other nations, famous actresses and actors, musicians, business executives, and athletes parade down the red carpet trying to have their images immortalized by the cameras that surround the walkway. As the guests enter the great ballroom, the president steps before the microphone and welcomes everyone. However, as the president concludes, a man dressed in paint-stained jeans and a ragged carpenters coat, steps up to the microphone and says “I am going away. To a place that is greater, to a place that is above this place. Where I am going you cannot come.” The president is baffled at the audacity of this man, who looks like a staff member of the building. Some guests laugh and call the man a lunatic. Others wonder to themselves jealously, “where could he being going, what more important party is happening this night where another camera could catch me in my new outfit with my new date?”

No one follows the man out of the building because the band begins to play, the bar opens, and some want to receive face-time with the president.

If anyone were to have followed the paint-stained man from the prestigious ballroom floor to the place that is “above” they would not have seen him walk into another party nor into a gathering with celebrities, national leaders, cameras, or red carpets. No, this man, named Jesus, went to converse with the poor woman who paces the corner downtown, to give some of his food to the prostitute in the warehouse district, to a cold, damp farmhouse where the undocumented immigrant is sleeping for the night, to the hospital where the AIDS patient is about to fall asleep for the last time, and to the disabled single dad who had to sell his wheel chair and medical equipment in order to pay for food for his children. Jesus went to a much greater place – the place of the poor, sick, lonely, and ignored.

In today’s Gospel, Jesus says that he is going where the Pharisees cannot go. He is going someplace greater, to a place that is above where they were. Jesus is of course referring to the Kingdom of God, the place of his Father. The Pharisees don’t get it because they are of the world and concerned with worldly things. Jesus is of the Kingdom and concerned with its coming. After concluding the discussion with the Pharisees, Jesus would have continued with his efforts to go to a great place – the Kingdom of God. For Jesus, the Kingdom is not in a lavish ballroom but on the street corner, on the barn floor, in the hospital room. Our challenge as Lent concludes is to allow Jesus’ claims of a greater place pique our interest and follow him to these places.

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