Fr. Francis Scaria

Smiley face In Lk 6:12 we read that Jesus went out to the mountain (of discernment) to brief the Father about what was happening to him and much more to consult him. He spent the whole night doing this. In the morning he came down. Without allowing Himself to be distracted by anything else, he gathered his ‘disciples’ and from among them he called twelve to be called ‘apostles’. Anyone would expect Jesus who being God knew everyone through and through to make the best choices on earth so that the least of his apostles would be better than the best of the rest of the world. But you and I know that thread of this storyline is different, definitely also unique.

What on earth did Jesus look for in these twelve to be called His ‘Apostles’, the future pillars of the Church. Most of the twelve hardly appear doing anything substantial except for their names listed among the twelve; they do not seem to be better than Pilate, Nicodemus, Simon of Cyrene, Widow of Naim or anyone else who appears in the Gospel narratives. They do not seem to do anything substantial or noticeable. The list includes the ‘sons of Thunder’ who would like to invoke a fire from heaven to consume their enemies. The first among them would deny Him not just once inadvertently but thrice with short intervals for him to rethink about it at least in subsequent occurrences. Jesus Himself had warned him clearly. There was also among them one who had fallen in love with what St. Paul called ‘the root of all evil’ (1 Tim 6:10) - money. About such, Jesus Himself would say, “No one can serve two masters (“Mt 6:24). This inordinate love for money would enslave him to the extent of making him betray the giver of all prosperity and wealth for a few silver coins which would finally empty him of even the little peace of mind he seems to have had until then.

Had not Jesus known that these chosen ones would not willingly walk with him? Being God, had He not known that Peter would deny Him, Judas would betray Him and others would desert Him in a time of crisis. Had He not known that not much could be expected from such fragile human beings and that there would be moments when He Himself would reach the end of His patience which would compel him say, “How long will I bear with you?” (Mt 17:17) Yes, He definitely did.

If He really did, why did He then choose them? The one and only answer is that His Father told Him on the mountain to do so.

This is a hard lesson of discernment. Can I take a decision that goes against the wisdom of my pure reason?

MUSINGS : 1-25, 26-50, 51-75

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