I’ve often pondered what it would have been like to meet Jesus when he walked the earth 2000 years ago. I think it’s clear that Jesus looked like a young Jewish man and did not stand out in his physical appearance… he wasn’t 8’ tall… he didn’t have any abnormal features… he didn’t talk differently. I don’t think I would have been able to pick him out of a crowd.
If that’s the case, how did people recognize that this Jewish man was “more than meets the eye” …. in fact he was God, the redeemer of all mankind. Well, I think it seemed to happened over a period of time. On one level he was a normal man. He walked and talked and got tired and hungry. Yet over time as he spoke and touched people’s heart, something began to happen. As he performed “signs and wonders”, it became clear that this man was someone very special.
I would think there was something in his eyes, the window of the soul, that must have been captivating. “Who is that looking out through those eyes ? Who’s behind those eyes?” If he truly is the son of God, what does he know and what has he seen? He does give us glimpses of that “godly memory” throughout the scriptures. Speaking to his disciples, he says, “ I saw Satan fall like lightening from heaven.” (Luke 10:18) Jesus was there at creation…at the heavenly war… throughout all time. And then he reads my soul and speaks to my deepest needs. I think I’ve got him figured out somewhat and BOOM… he comes in from “left field” with his plan of redemption…. His passion and death and resurrection. To be honest my head would have been spinning.
I have a lot of compassion for the disciples when they said something stupid in response to the Lord. Boy, what would I have come up with…” Oh excuse me Jesus, what if we get some “T Shirts” printed up with some quotes from your talks and sell them and ……………..” Woe, I can visualize the look from the Lord…. move over Thomas.” Nevertheless, I would have liked to have seen him, to have sat before him as he gave the Sermon on the Mount, to have looked into his eyes. I probably would have fainted, but wow it would have been something.
And yet he is with us now. In the power of the Holy Spirit, we are able to hear him speak to us…to share his love for us… to lead and guide and heal us. In the sacraments he ministers to us. He gives us his very own body and blood in the Eucharist. He forgives our sins in the beautiful sacrament of reconciliation. He’s with us in our marriage ….at our baptisms… we have the scriptures with his powerful words.
Well with that said, I guess I’m pretty happy to have been born during this time… the time that almighty God decided I would be born. Sure it’s a crazy time with wars and rumors of wars, with pandemics, with social unrest and a country that seems to have lost its moral compass, with the church seemingly tripping over its own feet at times, yet, “this is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it.” (Psalm 118:24)
And one day we will see Jesus face to face and be able to look into his eyes, and that will even be better than walking with him 2,000 years ago.