Grow+Go ~ Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe
| November 21, 2021 | Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ,
Dn 7:13-14 | Rv 1:5-8 | Jn 18:33b-37
GROW - AS A DISCIPLE | PRAY, STUDY, ENGAGE, SERVE
Many Americans have a fascination with royalty. We love to follow the royal family in real life and via the bingeworthy Crown series on Netflix. As royal-watchers know, the crown isn’t all it’s cracked up to be! History and experience, too, show that earthly kingdoms include their share of divisiveness, betrayal and, at times, a total disregard for other people. Jesus gives us a different kind of kingdom and kingship to aspire to – one based on truth not fiction, and born of suffering and not succession. Jesus did not seek earthly glory but endured a crown of thorns and death on a cross to establish the kingdom of heaven – a kingdom that perfects us and unites us with the Holy Trinity. So it is fitting that as we end the liturgical year, we honor Jesus as King of the Universe – heaven, earth, and all creation. Jesus established his kingdom by sacrificing himself out of love for us. By our baptism we have a share in this holy identity, and therefore, with the help of the Holy Spirit, we have the authority and power to proclaim Christ’s Kingship to all the world by our words and deeds. In this way we are able to serve the one true king, and participate in building God’s kingdom on earth.
GO - EVANGELIZE | PRAYER, INVITATION, WITNESS, ACCOMPANIMENT
Some people aren’t shy about saying where they stand: I’m especially fascinated by bumper stickers. We don’t like to talk about politics or religion, but somehow it’s OK to proclaim our most deeply held beliefs as we tool down the highway. As we celebrate Jesus as King of the Universe, it’s a good time to ask ourselves: Is Jesus king of our universe? If so, how do we proclaim it? Bumper stickers can be fun, but sharing our belief in Jesus as our Savior requires human interaction. Introverts like me may find it difficult, but we can witness to our faith in a number of ways: Yes, through conversation, but also through the priorities we choose and the examples we set. As members of the kingdom of God – present on earth but not yet fully realized – our baptismal vocation is to participate in Christ’s priestly, prophetic, and kingly mission. We can ask Jesus to help us find the words and actions that best help us do so.
Advent starts next Sunday! Just as we prepare for major holidays like Christmas and Thanksgiving, we can start roughing out an Advent “menu.” How will we observe as a family this year? What are our goals for the season? What can I accomplish in the week ahead to free up Advent for prayerful preparation?