The Climb

24 August 2019. Feast of Saint Bartholomew

Reflection (Sem. Philip Faustino S. Volante)

Jesus promised Nathanael that he “will see greater things than that”. As he followed Jesus, greater things had been revealed to him one at a time. Jesus was faithful to His promise. Nathanael, or Bartholomew, the Apostle whose feast we are celebrating today, did see more than what he could only see under the fig tree. He saw the Kingdom of God being revealed to him right before his very eyes.

The call of Nathanael, to me, is like climbing a mountain. The very moment you start your journey, you are already being enveloped by the beauty of nature. And as you go along the trail, you will notice that the view you see gets clearer, better, and more exciting to reach the top. When you reach the peak, you will just breathe in the freshest air, and realize that it was worth all the hardships, long walks and pains. Because more than the magnificent view, the feeling of achieving something, overcoming fears and anxieties, and feeling closer to God, make the body and the soul more satisfied.

The call of God, just like Nathanael’s, is like climbing a mountain. The moment you say “yes” is already the start of your journey towards Jesus. And as you go along your chosen vocation, you realize that the view is getting better and better. Your perspective is starting to widen and your understanding starts to broaden. Though there are moments where you need to step on mud, traverse on rocky ground, crawl, climb and duck, these are all part of that glorious experience. Hopefully, the rocky grounds in our vocation may not stop us from pursuing the peak of our Christian life, which is being with God in His Kingdom. Let us not be discouraged by the large stones and the raging waters, that may block our path, but may we learn to trust Jesus our Guide who will either allow us to step on Him for us to pass, or give us wings for us to cross over any hindrances in our lives. I assure you, when you say “yes” to God’s call, you will see greater things being revealed to you one step at a time.

The Gospel Today

John 1: 45 – 51

Philip found Nathanael and told him,
“We have found the one about whom Moses wrote in the law,
and also the prophets, Jesus son of Joseph, from Nazareth.”
But Nathanael said to him,
“Can anything good come from Nazareth?”
Philip said to him, “Come and see.”
Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him and said of him,
“Here is a true child of Israel.
There is no duplicity in him.”
Nathanael said to him, “How do you know me?” 
Jesus answered and said to him,
“Before Philip called you, I saw you under the fig tree.”
Nathanael answered him,
“Rabbi, you are the Son of God; you are the King of Israel.”
Jesus answered and said to him,
“Do you believe
because I told you that I saw you under the fig tree?
You will see greater things than this.”
And he said to him, “Amen, amen, I say to you,
you will see heaven opened and the angels of God
ascending and descending on the Son of Man.”

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