* Friday, 19th JANUARY. Day 2 of the Unity Octave. God doesn't choose the best. He chooses those He wants.
* He summoned those whom he wanted.
Friday, 19th JANUARY
Day 2 of the Unity Octave
And he went up on the mountain, and called to him those whom he desired; and they came to him. And he appointed twelve, to be with him, and to be sent out to preach and have authority to cast out demons: Simon whom he surnamed Peter; James the son of Zebedee and John the brother of James, whom he surnamed Boanerges, that is, sons of thunder; Andrew, and Philip, and Bartholomew, and Matthew, and Thomas, and James the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus, and Simon the Cananaean, and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him.
"He called to Him those He desired" for no other reason than that: He just wanted those and no others. This wasn't like 'The Voice' or 'X-Factor' where the winner is the most talented. Jesus didn't choose the best or the most charming, those who had more friends, more knowledge or a better position... He just chose those He wanted; because He felt like it.
St Paul explained it to the Corinthians: "consider your call, brethren; not many of you were wise according to worldly standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth; but God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise, God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong".
God has a certain inclination to choose very 'low profile' instruments. Did you know, for instance, that Moses stuttered? And yet, among the thousands of Israelites that God could choose to negotiate with the Pharaoh, He wanted the stammerer! The biographies of many saints paint a similar picture.
St Bernadette and St John Vianney are known for their learning difficulties. An online biography of St. Joseph of Cupertino (1603-1668) reads: "he was an Italian mystic whose life is a wonderful combination of a complete lack of natural capacity and an extraordinary supernatural efficiency. He lacked every natural gift. He was incapable of passing a test, maintaining a conversation, taking care of a house, or even touching a dish without breaking it. He was called Brother Ass by his companions in the monastery." Wow! What a description! Yet by the end of his life his reputation for holiness was widespread and crowds would come to attend his Mass. The lesson is clear: God doesn't choose the best. He chooses those He wants.
Mary, my Mother, may I learn to be a faithful instrument of God for whatever He has chosen me to do.
Commentary of the day :
Vatican Council II
Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, "Lumen Gentium", §18-19 (©Libreria Editrice Vaticana)
"He summoned those whom he wanted "
This Sacred Council, following closely in the footsteps of the First Vatican Council, with that Council teaches and declares that Jesus Christ, the eternal Shepherd, established His holy Church, having sent forth the apostles as He Himself had been sent by the Father; and He willed that their successors, namely the bishops, should be shepherds in His Church even to the consummation of the world. And in order that the episcopate itself might be one and undivided, He placed Blessed Peter over the other apostles, and instituted in him a permanent and visible source and foundation of unity of faith and communion...
The Lord Jesus, after praying to the Father, calling to Himself those whom He desired, appointed twelve to be with Him, and whom He would send to preach the Kingdom of God; and these apostles He formed after the manner of a college or a stable group, over which He placed Peter chosen from among them. He sent them first to the children of Israel and then to all nations, so that as sharers in His power they might make all peoples His disciples, and sanctify and govern them, and thus spread His Church, and by ministering to it under the guidance of the Lord, direct it all days even to the consummation of the world. And in this mission they were fully confirmed on the day of Pentecost in accordance with the Lord's promise: "You shall receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you, and you shall be witnesses for me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and in Samaria, and even to the very ends of the earth".
And the apostles, by preaching the Gospel everywhere, and it being accepted by their hearers under the influence of the Holy Spirit, gather together the universal Church, which the Lord established on the apostles and built upon blessed Peter, their chief, Christ Jesus Himself being the supreme cornerstone. That divine mission, entrusted by Christ to the apostles, will last until the end of the world, since the Gospel they are to teach is for all time the source of all life for the Church.
Biblical references: Jn 20:21; Mk 3:13-19; Mt 10:1-42; Lk 6:13; Jn 21:15-17; Rom 1:16; Mt 28:16-20; Mk 16:15; Lk 24:45-48; Jn 20:21-23; Mt 28:20; Acts 2:1-36; Acts 1:8; Mk 16:20; Rev 21:14; Mt 16:18; Eph 2: 20; Mt 28:20.