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Scripture Reflection, June 24: Becoming A Light to the Nations

Scripture Reflection, June 24: Becoming A Light to the Nations

Scripture Readings:

Isaiah 49: 1-6
Psalm 139
Acts 13: 22-26
Luke 1: 57-66, 80

A colleague of mine is entering the third trimester of pregnancy, and each workday is a delight hearing reports of the baby’s kicks or witnessing his growth through the expansion of her belly. This new life growing within her is a reminder of the miracle of life and the hand of God in all of life. This Sunday’s readings underscore that God is with us and a part of us and has loved us since conception. As Psalm 139 reads, each of us is wonderfully made in the image of God. I find this humbling and comforting.

Not only are we intensely loved by God, but we are asked to reflect God’s love to the world in the lives we lead, the choices we make, and the things we do. A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to participate in the first of two Catholics On Call Young Adult Conferences at Catholic Theological Union, a week dedicated to helping young adults in identifying how God may be inviting them to serve so that God’s “…salvation may reach to the ends of the earth” (Is 49:6). Although responding to God’s invitation for our life is ongoing, time, prayer and reflection help in determining our own call. We are each called to love as individually and intensely as God loves each of us; how that plays out in our vocation is varied.

John the Baptist honored today offers an ideal example of one who was honest with himself and God’s hope for his life. Already a miracle in being conceived by Elizabeth, a woman thought barren, John was named and chosen by God and lived into his call to give witness to the one greater than he and the one meant to bring salvation to the world. As easy as it is to emulate someone we admire or attempt to become someone we truly are not for all the wrong reasons, John teaches us otherwise. He did not gloat on the accolades of others who thought that he may be their savior, but lived into God’s plan for his life. By being who he was, others were able to live into who God invited them to be. John, not threatened by Jesus’ greatness, was secure enough in himself because of his assurance of God’s love for him.

Wherever our vocational discernment may lead, allowing ourselves to be embraced by God’s love and reflecting this love that is with us always—even before our earliest beginnings—will help us, in our own unique ways, to become "a light to the nations” (Is 49:6).

By Anne Marie Tirpak

Anne Marie Tirpak is a CTU Bernardin Scholar and works for the Department of Stewardship and Development, Archdiocese of Chicago.

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