It is good to hear what other faithful followers of Jesus say about him. But, unless you take the first steps to encounter Jesus yourself, you cannot truly know him.
Jesus saw the disciples of John the Baptist following him and asked them, “What are you seeking?” He asks, in a way, an existential question. What are you seeking? Success? Money? Love? Community? Creative outlet?
John’s disciples answered, “Rabbi, where are you staying?” That answer may seem perplexing to us, but it made perfect sense back then. No schoolhouses or centers of education existed in those days. Most learning took place in the home or in the process of living life. These disciples of John wanted to know about Jesus. They were seeking to know him on his own turf. However, as not to be rude, they did not invite themselves. They politely asked, in a way, “May we come to your place? May we dine with you tonight? Will you teach us?” The gentle Lamb of God does not hesitate. He invites them in, “Come and you will see.”
How sweet that day must have been for them. We are not told a word of their conversation, but we can guess from the context that they did not spend too much time saying things like, “My these pastries are good! Martha’s bakery?” If their conversation started there, it did not stay there. They wanted to know: “Are you the One? Our teacher told us that you are the Lamb of God. Please tell us! Are you?”
Whatever words were exchanged, those who entered Jesus’ house calling him “teacher” that day left his house calling him “the Messiah.”
Have you spent a life changing day with Jesus? The invitation lies open here for you. John, the gospel writer, wrote living words. Behind the human authors of Scripture, the divine author speaks. When we sit down to read these words, it is as if we are spending a day with Jesus. He himself is speaking to us through what are ultimately his words.
Oh, to spend a day with Jesus! Nothing could be better.