The WORD in Other Words by Fr Fred Mislang SVD (Philippines) for Friday 7th Week of Easter
Acts 25:13b-21, 21:15-19
We see how close and personal and deeply caring this conversation between Our Lord and Peter, “Do you love Me?” “You know that I love you.” Jesus knows and loves Peter deeply and Peter knows and loves the Lord deeply, too. Like what St. Paul will later say, “I am full of confidence for I know whom I believe” (Z lim. 1,12).
In this light, I would like to share this very touching story: Once a great actor was asked to recite Psalm 23 for the pleasure of his guests. He consented to doing so as long as his friend, the old man who was not an elocutionist, would to do the same.
The actor did the reading impressively. When the old man did his turn, his voice was not remarkable, his tone was not faultless, but when he finished, there was not a dry eye in the room.
The actor rose and his voice quivered as he said, “Ladies and gentlemen, I reached your eyes and ears; he has reached your hearts. The difference is just this: I know the Psalm, but he knows the Shepherd.” (Anon, Quotes and Anecdotes, Anthony P. Castle)
Do we know just the Psalm but not the Shepherd? As St. Paul said, “I know whom I believed…” We should know whom we believe! It is not enough that we know Him for what others say about Him. Rather, we should know Him personally like friend or brother. Jesus asked the crowd, “Who do you think the Son of man is?” St. Peter said. “You are the Son of the living God.”