Today’s reading is John 14:1-14 (NABRE):
Last Supper Discourses.
1 “Do not let your hearts be troubled. You have faith in God; have faith also in me. 2 In my Father’s house there are many dwelling places. If there were not, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back again and take you to myself, so that where I am you also may be. 4 Where [I] am going you know the way.” 5 Thomas said to him, “Master, we do not know where you are going; how can we know the way?” 6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. 7 If you know me, then you will also know my Father. From now on you do know him and have seen him.” 8 Philip said to him, “Master, show us the Father, and that will be enough for us.” 9 Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you for so long a time and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? 10 Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on my own. The Father who dwells in me is doing his works. 11 Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me, or else, believe because of the works themselves. 12 Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever believes in me will do the works that I do, and will do greater ones than these, because I am going to the Father. 13 And whatever you ask in my name, I will do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 If you ask anything of me in my name, I will do it.
It is easy in today’s world to get bogged down by all of the troubles in the world. In today’s reading, Jesus’ first words are “Do not be troubled” (John 14:1) He then says, “In my Father’s house there are many dwelling places” (John 14:2). This verse is a reassuring reminder that there is not one set path to Heaven. In today’s world of such powerful technology, it is much easier for certain ideals to be emphasized and transmitted on a wider scale. Even related to spirituality, it is easy to believe that there is only one way of being pious. Jesus hopes to show that he has a place prepared for everyone. We are to accept ourselves the way we are and strive to embody His teachings in all we say and do.
Jesus also says, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you know me then you will also know my father” (John 14:6-7). It is easy to get caught up in the day to day events of life. Especially in college, when we are expected to begin to discern how we want to spend our lives, it is easy to feel lost and alone. We cannot possibly know what our futures entail; hence, finding the correct path to follow may seem near impossible when we don’t know the final destination. Jesus reassures us, however, that, if we place our trust in him, we cannot be lost. Additionally, through Jesus, we know God. This realization is greater than anything we could hope to achieve on our own.
Finally, Jesus ends by saying, “If you ask anything of me in my name, I will do it” (John 14:14). This reminder is a powerful way to think about prayer. While we should certainly pray to God to thank Him for our blessings and praise Him for His good works, we can also ask Him for help. It is often easy to think that we should not ask for things for ourselves. I know that I often have the fear of being selfish in prayer. Here, Jesus reminds us that He wants us to ask for guidance. Asking something of someone is an act of trust; it conveys that the asker believes the person will be able to fulfill his request. Otherwise, he would not have asked! It’s freeing, therefore, that we can ask Jesus for help in our daily struggles. Prayer is a conversation; may we remember that God recognizes our needs and wants us to realize that we can rely on Him for guidance.
Anne Marie Crinnion ’20 is a Freshman living in Thayer Hall.