People are always looking for signs. How many times have we not asked ‘Lord just give me a sign …’? If only the crowds had listened to Jesus and taken his words and teaching to heart. If only we would read the Gospels and take the words and teaching of Jesus to heart! For many it is probably too much effort. We want the easy way of sign, wonders and miracles. Real faith goes much, much deeper than that. It comes from reading the Gospels and a time of quiet contemplation on what we have read. “There is something greater than Jonah here” Jesus said, referring to himself. But they were too blind and their hearts were closed so they couldn’t recognise him.
This same blindness and hardness of heart prevents many people from recognising Jesus today. The wonder and miracle of his presence is made real for us every day in the celebration of Holy Mass, yet we fail to see it and recognise him. The priest holding up the Sacred Host and the Sacred Chalice proclaims, “Behold the Lamb of God …”. Is that what you behold, Jesus the Lamb of God? We have the greatest gift and opportunity to encounter Jesus in the Holy Eucharist but often, far too often, we deny ourselves this opportunity – and go looking for signs here, there and everywhere!
In truth, we’re not very different to the people of Jesus’ time. We also ask for signs. Today Jesus reminds us that “when Jonah preached they repented and there is something greater than Jonah here.” When we make this Lenten journey from Repentance to Renewal we will recognise Jesus.
Come to know Jesus by reading the Gospels. If you haven’t done so already this year, read the Gospel of Matthew during these weeks of Lent. During Lent go to Mass as often as possible and experience the miracle of the Eucharist. Allow yourself to be filled with wonder and awe when the priest proclaims “Behold the Lamb of God” and acknowledge in your heart ‘yes Lord, I believe!”
Father open my eyes and my heart to see the wonder of your presence made real for me by your Son Jesus. Amen.