Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Second Sunday of the Year : 18th January 2009

Jesus turned round, saw them following and said, ‘What do you want?’ They answered, ‘Rabbi,’ – which means Teacher –’where do you live?’ ‘Come and see’ he replied; so they went and saw where he lived, and stayed with him the rest of that day.

Jesus, where do you live?

It might seem to us an odd question. Why would that matter? And yet, where we live is very important to us. Home sweet home, we say, and There’s no place like home. A home is more than a house or a flat or a few rooms in building.

In the news last weekend was a shocking story about a man who returned home with his small daughter to discover that the locks had been changed and the house had been repossessed by the building society. Shocking enough, but even more so as he was not in arrears with his mortgage and it was not his building society who had repossessed the house.

There was a happy ending to this tale - but we are only too aware that in other places the story does not turn out quite so well. The loss of property is one thing - but to lose a home, that it so much worse.

Home is where the heart is, we also say, and it is the heart that turns bricks and mortar into a place of safety, of comfort, of peace. It is a refuge from the troubles of the world, a place where we gather hope and strength. And our home says much about the sort of people we are, what we care about, what matters to us.

So where does Jesus live? And why does it matter?

At his birth he was homeless - or was he? Matthew tells us that he was born in a stable because there was no place in the Inn. In St Luke’s Gospel we read Jesus’ words ‘The birds of the air have nests and the foxes have holes, but Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.’

Yet John tells us that ‘The Word became flesh, and dwelt amongst us’. He made his home amongst us. His home. The world is his home. It is here where his heart his. These are the people he loves. He lives not in some remote or far away place, but right in our midst. He is with us. And like the disciples, he calls us too.

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