Sunday, January 19, 2014


John saw Jesus coming toward him and declared, "Here is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! This is he of whom I said, `After me comes a man who ranks ahead of me because he was before me.' I myself did not know him; but I came baptizing with water for this reason, that he might be revealed to Israel." And John testified, "I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it remained on him. I myself did not know him, but the one who sent me to baptize with water said to me, `He on whom you see the Spirit descend and remain is the one who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.' And I myself have seen and have testified that this is the Son of God."

The next day John again was standing with two of his disciples, and as he watched Jesus walk by, he exclaimed, "Look, here is the Lamb of God!" The two disciples heard him say this, and they followed Jesus. When Jesus turned and saw them following, he said to them, "What are you looking for?" They said to him, "Rabbi" (which translated means Teacher), "where are you staying?" He said to them, "Come and see." They came and saw where he was staying, and they remained with him that day. It was about four o'clock in the afternoon. One of the two who heard John speak and followed him was Andrew, Simon Peter's brother. He first found his brother Simon and said to him, "We have found the Messiah" (which is translated Anointed). He brought Simon to Jesus, who looked at him and said, "You are Simon son of John. You are to be called Cephas" (which is translated Peter). John 1:29-42

"Stick with me." That is what my father used to say and to this day it can make me cringe. I loved my Dad, but when he said that, it meant there was more work to do, and that moment by moment he was thinking up more work for us. While other children were out playing, we were painting and scraping, moving and digging, and engaging in a seemingly endless list of chores that needed to be done. My parent's house dates back to the 1820s, so there was legitimately always something more to do. As children though, we would rather be out running around with our friends in the sun shine, riding our bikes and jumping in the ocean. Anything but being captive to my father's work ethic and imagination.

The invitation to visit, to hospitality brought the first disciples into Jesus' life and home. They remained with him all day. They felt comfortable and accepted just as they are were. These rough and tumbled fishermen were welcome in Jesus' dwelling, so comfortable they stayed all day. And for us God promises that are welcomed and wanted, just as we are. God wants us around. God's desire is known in hospitality. Nothing glamorous, just a simple come and see, and hang around all day, like a beloved friend.

Today I ask God to help me to be open to God's welcome whenever it may come. May we all make room for others as we make room in our hearts and home for the love of God.

The Collect

Almighty God, whose Son our Savior Jesus Christ is the light of the world: Grant that your people, illumined by your Word and Sacraments, may shine with the radiance of Christ's glory, that he may be known, worshipped, and obeyed to the ends of the earth; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

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