We hear St. John the Evangelist’s account of Jesus’ baptism by John the Baptist today. Last week we heard St. Matthew’s version. The accounts are similar, but not identical. That’s not surprising for a number reasons; different eyewitnesses, different authors and different purposes in telling the story for instance. But what is striking in this account is what happens the next day. Andrew hears something that St. John says of Jesus, perhaps in passing. But Andrew hears it, and being present to the moment, acts. And because he acts, his life, the life of family, and all of our lives are changed.
It is so easy to not be present today. There are errands to run, worries to rehearse and distractions aplenty. We can be so caught up in what seems important in the short term that we totally miss what is life changing in the long term. We fall into the trap of imagining we’ll always have another chance to talk to someone or get another chance to have an experience that we treasure. But that’s not always true, sometimes in very difficult ways.
Andrew is present to the moment when John makes his pronouncement. Perhaps it was a dramatic moment and his words surrounded with a flourish. Perhaps it was just a whispered aside. But either way, Andrew hears and sees and follows. And then tells others what he has found. Would that we were so able to live to each moment of our life that we could do the same.
The direct link to the video is found here.