Mark 1:1-18

They say that the most perfect friend we can have is the one who knows the very worst about us, and still love us just the same.

Our parents, especially our mothers, are known to be just like that. But there is one who loves us even more. Today John the Baptist introduces us to this person, Jesus Christ.

  • Jesus is our friend because He not only forgives us our sins, He also forgets them.
  • Jesus not only tells us the truth. He is the truth.
  • He does not just tell us the way to go. He is the way.
  • He does not tell us what life is about. He is life.
  • He does not talk about the future. He is the future. He is the one we are looking for.
  • Jesus is not just for me alone. A relationship with God is a relationship with a community. The church is created by God as a place where we can recognize Jesus, accept Him, and love Him.
  • Jesus tells us that our salvation comes from recognizing that we are on the journey of life together with Him and His Church.

This is why God sent us John the Baptist, first of all to announce that Jesus has arrived and then to tell us what to do in order to meet Him.

When someone important comes to our home, or church, we prepare ourselves. We clean up, repaint, wash things, and place everything in order. Sometimes we even fix the roads and clean up the town.

Jesus will not come to us if we have mountains of pride, live like pagans, show no respect, are deceitful, or are unkind. These and other sins must be fixed up before we meet Jesus.

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John the Baptist preaches baptism as a sign of our unity with Him and tells people to repent, forgive, and to be merciful. To meet Jesus we must try to be like Jesus.

John said, if you have two coats, give one to someone who does not have one. Share your food. He tells those who collect taxes, to collect just what is owed. He tells soldiers to obey their officers.

John the Baptist teaches us, but he himself eats only what he finds in the desert. He is a humble man. He does not think about himself but is centred on Christ.

John tells us that the baptism that Jesus has to offer, will totally renew all who accept it, and give them a full life in the Holy Spirit.

Today we have a lot to be thankful for. We have a lot to think about and a lot to pray about.

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