Scripture: 1st Reading: Rev21,9-14; Resp. Psalm: Ps145,10-13,17-18; Gosp. Accl.: Jn1,49; Gospel: Jn1,45-51
Our life here on earth is just for a time. Our real home is heaven. Our real destiny is eternity. Our sojourn here is an interlude, a pause, in that march to the eternity of God. We are therefore here on a journey. We are here for a purpose. The focus of our journey here is heaven. The joy of our existence is to get there at the end of our stay here on earth.
Our work here on earth is this cut out for us: to do everything legitimate and lawful within our capacity to get there. For this goal, we have the Apostles as great witnesses and models given to us for our emulation.
When our Lord called them to be His disciples, the Apostles were normal Jews, seekers of the will of the Most High. They were called and immersed themselves in the business of their Master. Today we read of the call of Bartholomew. We are told that Nathanael was a very sincere, honest man who said it as it was. When Philip told him they had found the Messiah and that He was Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph, Nathaniel expressed surprise and open disbelief at this possibility that something as good as this could happen to Nazareth.
When eventually he was brought to Our Lord, He called him an Israelite in whom there is no guile. With the enthralling presence of our Lord and the fact that He told him some incredible things, Nathanael came to belief in Him as the Messiah and professed faith in Him as the Messiah, the Son of God.
From that day till the end of his eventful life, Bartholomew became wholeheartedly dedicated to the cause of the good news. He told of the salvation of God among all the nations. He clung wholeheartedly to his Lord and Saviour. He gave his entire life into the enterprise of winning souls for the kingdom. He was a pillar, a foundation stone of the new kingdom of love that His Master bought at the great price of His blood.
The Apostle Bartholomew became one of the twelve foundation stones that John, the writer of the book of Revelation saw in his vision of the holy city Jerusalem coming down out of heaven from God. This city that has the glory of God and enthralling brilliance and radiance, is the dream city of the longing heart of every faithful believer.
We have been called too to this mission of the Lord through our baptisms. We have been immersed in the Lord's passion. We have become the new creation of His love. The word challenges us to greater fidelity to the mission entrusted to us. It calls us to greater passion and commitment. When the Lord comes back, may He find us at our work, winning souls for His Kingdom.
Let us pray: "Strengthen in us, O Lord, the faith by which the blessed Apostle Bartholomew clung wholeheartedly to your Son, and grant that through the help of his prayers your Church may become for all the nations the sacrament of salvation." Amen.
May the Living Word of God find a true dwelling place within our hearts and souls today and always.