Call upon His Name

In the Gospel, unclean spirits call out the name of Jesus not as a confession of who He is, but an attempt to fight off His power. There is a belief that using the name of an opposing spirit shows mastery over that spirit. But, the unclean spirits were silenced by Jesus, showing His dominion over them and the power of His Name.

In their synagogue was a man with an unclean spirit; he cried out, “What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are—the Holy One of God!” Jesus rebuked him and said, “Quiet! Come out of him!” The unclean spirit convulsed him and with a loud cry came out of him. — Mark 1:23-26

Today, the Gospel reminds us that Jesus has given us access to Him and His powerful Name. A Name we can call upon in times of joy, triumph, and hope. A Name we can call upon in times of trials, fear, discouragement, or suffering.

What shall we fear? For even unclean spirits are subject to Him and His dominion.

All were amazed and asked one another, “What is this? A new teaching with authority. He commands even the unclean spirits and they obey him.” — Mark 1:27

Whatever we are going through right now, whether joy or sadness, hope or despair, let us call upon His Name, the Name above all names.

And through His Name, we also have access to our Father in heaven.

Call upon His Name.

Your time will come

Young vice-presidents. Young entrepreneurs. Millionaires under thirty years old.

It can be discouraging to compare ourselves with others.

Today’s Gospel encourages us and teaches us that our time will come.

“When Jesus began his ministry he was about thirty years of age.” — Luke 3:23

David defeated Goliath as a boy. Jesus started His ministry at 30 years old. Moses led the Israelites out of Egypt when He was 80. Abraham was 100 when he begot Isaac.

No matter how old or how young we are, God is calling us to be patient and to continue hoping and believing that our time will come.

And while we are waiting, let us remain faithful to God. Let us remain faithful to the task at hand. To bloom where He planted us. Let us remain faithful to loving the people God entrusted us with — our families, our friends, our workmates. Let us remain faithful to the work God is asking us to do right now — whether our dream jobs or our day jobs. 

Let us remain patient, joyful, hopeful, faithful, and trusting in the waiting.

Are you waiting for your big break? A promotion? A business success? A child? Your time will come.

 

P.S. Still, not our will be God’s will be done. Remain trusting in His will.

Our preconceived notions of God

When Jesus comes again, will you recognize Him?

When Jesus came more than two thousand years ago, people were expecting a king, a ruler, a political leader who would overthrow world powers and establish an earthly kingdom that would last forever.

Instead, He was born as a fragile infant in a manger. He was the Son of God, but He was also the son of a carpenter. He did not overthrow kings and rulers and political leaders by force. But, He did establish His Church and His kingdom that stands until today.

But Nathanael said to him, “Can anything good come from Nazareth?” Philip said to him, “Come and see.” — John 1:46

Nathanael, like any other Jew at the time of Jesus was also probably waiting for a Messiah who was a ruler and a political leader. He had preconceived notions of who the Messiah was supposed to be.

Today, the Gospel teaches us to let go of our preconceived notions of God and what it means to follow Jesus.

Many of us get discouraged when trials come just when we start following Jesus. We think that when we follow Jesus, our lives will be without trials or sufferings. That when we follow Jesus, our lives will be filled with worldly or secular rewards. After all, Jesus, whom we follow, was the son of a carpenter and suffered on the cross.

Like Jesus, Philip tells Nathanael to “come and see.” Jesus calls us to come follow Him first and He will show us who He truly is and what it means to follow Him.

When we follow Jesus, there will still be suffering. But, God can turn our suffering for our redemption and the redemption of many — like what God did for the sufferings of Jesus.

When we follow Jesus, we will see who God truly is, in all His glory and majesty, in eternity with Him.

When we follow Jesus, we will see how God loves us as a father loves his children.

When we follow Jesus, we will see the heavenly rewards He has prepared for us — for our perseverance and faith in this broken world.

When we follow Jesus, we will see how heaven and Earth belong to God, how He is still in control.

When we follow Jesus, we will see how God is present in our everyday lives.

“Come and see.”

Follow Jesus and you will see.


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