Today’s Gospel from John ends with Jesus telling his listeners,“I cannot do anything on my own; I judge as I hear, and my judgment is just, because I do not seek my own will but the will of the one who sent me.”
I do not seek my own will but the will of the one who sent me.
What a counter-cultural statement in a society that celebrates the rights of individuals to make whatever choices bring them pleasure, that treats all visions of the good as equally valid, that acts as though it is we who assign the purpose of our lives.
Jesus models a different way of being, one that says my life and my purpose come from God. One that acknowledges that we live in a world that is not ours to do with as we choose…a universe not designed by us for own goals and purposes. Johannes Baptiste Metz says that in poverty of spirit “we learn to accept ourselves as beings who do not belong to ourselves.”
I’ll be speaking more extensively about this statement of Jesus’ at tonight’s Novena of Grace at St. Thomas More in St. Paul. If you are in the area, join us for the Novena Mass at 7:00p.m.