Gospel Reflection for the Baptism of Our Lord – Year B – January 7th 2018
A parent often says to the child. ‘Of course I love you’. The baptism of the Lord was the time when he heard from the Father that he was loved: ‘you are my beloved son’. In looking at Jesus, God was delighted, and the favour of God rested on Jesus. This is one of the meanings of our baptism also.
The baptism experience was a guiding experience for Jesus. Maybe he would remember it at times when he was tempted off course, when life was really rough, or when he was strengthening others in their hard times. It was what we might call ‘a peak experience’. The effects would remain, like an afterglow.
The feast today invites us to soak in this love also. As God looks on us he sees that we are the image of Jesus, our bother, and loves us through and through. Our baptism as a child was a time both of God promising himself to us always, but also of the love of our parents and extended family. Baptism unites us with our own natural family, but also with the new family of Jesus when he calls us all ‘his mother, sisters and brothers’.
This is a big part of our identity. Asked who we are, we have many answers. One answer is that we are baptised into the family of God and are children of the same father. The words, ‘You are my beloved son or daughter’ are spoken to all of us.
Picture the day of your baptism, pray for those who were there then, and give thanks!
May I know always Lord that I am the beloved of you.
Donal Neary SJ
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Fr Donal Neary SJ is editor of the Sacred Heart Messenger
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