21st Sunday in Ordinary Time
Joshua 24:1-2, 15-18
Psalm 34:2-3, 16-21
To whom shall we go? (John 6:68)
Joshua, the Old Testament leader called to bring God’s people into the Promised Land, has much in common with Peter, the fisherman Jesus chose to lead his Church. Both men knew what it meant to follow God when the going got rough!
As Moses’ servant, Joshua heard the people murmur and grumble against God during their desert wanderings. As Jesus’ disciple, Peter heard other disciples complain that Jesus’ “bread of life” statements were too difficult to accept (John 6:60). Yet both men realized that God was at work in the powerful things they had witnessed: Joshua saw the Israelites’ deliverance from slavery in Egypt; Peter, the healings and miracles worked by Jesus. Each leader expressed his conviction in a ringing declaration of faith (Joshua 24:15; John 6:68-69).
“Master, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life” (John 6:68). Never before had Peter met anyone who spoke words that gave life. Through Jesus, he had come to experience God’s love and mercy. He also came to realize that Jesus spoke with God’s authority and power. He saw him move people from unbelief to faith through his miracles and his preaching. As a conscientious witness to these wonders, Peter could only declare, “We have come to believe and are convinced that you are the Holy One of God” (6:69).
Just as he did for Joshua and Peter, God wants to show himself to you. He wants to convince you that he has a perfect plan for your life. What’s really exciting about this prospect is that when God pours his grace on you and reveals his love to you, it changes you. Of course, it fills you with joy and faith. But it also gives you all the courage and strength you need to do what Peter and Joshua did—to stay close to the Lord when the going gets rough!
“Lord, you are the Holy One who loves, hears, and rescues me. I believe your words. I will follow you wherever you lead me—right up to the gates of heaven!”~WAU