Mk 3:13-19 The A Team
Here am I, Lord. How he loves us! Jesus went up the mountain and summoned those whom he wanted.
The Lord went up the mountain for only one reason: to pray. This was the moment he had been waiting for – to share in a very intimate way his divine life with twelve men whom he could call friends. The Lord had been inspired to invite, to call forward, to reach out to these twelve men of Israel. He made no mistakes. Thomas Reid’s Essay on the Intellectual Powers of Man, 1786, stated what has now become famous, “In every chain of reasoning, the evidence of the last conclusion can be no greater than that of the weakest link of the chain, whatever may be the strength of the rest.” The names and lives of the Apostles bear witness to the strength of the divine! Reason is trumped only by the cement of the Holy Spirit.
Waiting below, the Apostles must have been anxious to know whether or not they had made the cut, or better, if they had been cut out from the rest of the world. What makes this band of brothers so special is that they did not comprehend the magnitude, the significance of this moment. Little did they know! Little did they even imagine! Their mental or emotional states were not in harmony with the divine estate! In fact maybe some of them, like Thomas perhaps, even dreaded this call into the unknown. What does this all mean? How will things change for me, for you, for the whole world? I find it hard to believe that their faith was any stronger than mine? Were their efforts any greater than mine? And yet, does the Lord not continue to call? Does he not continue to call you and me? Has the Lord not shaken the very foundations of our lives?
I love the song, “How He Loves Us So.” But I do not love it that much! It is not radical enough. The Lord is jealous for me. He loves like a hurricane and I am a tree! Hurricanes only bend when they are far away. The Lord is not far. He is near to me. In fact, he is most near the broken hearted! He uproots me, throws me, and plants me in another planet, galaxy, even Universe! This is what he did to them. This is what he did to me and to you!
With time, the list has been modified, not in names, but in order. Yes, Peter comes first – always. Judas comes last – always. It may not have always been that way though. We would be foolish to think that Judas had been an outcast from the very beginning. I doubt it. I would not be surprised if Judas had been the most zealous in his desire to know, love and serve the Lord. An injection of doubt can easily turn into the poison of envy, jealousy and pride. As it quickly circulates through the system it arrives to the heart and intoxicates the eyes, ears and tongue. Once penetrated, it must have been hard, almost unbearable, for Judas to even bear the sight of Jesus or how sinners would bow down before him, listen to his teachings and keep silent over his expenses.
If the Lord does not call me into an intimate relationship with him, then I have been poisoned by doubt. Look and see for yourself the symptoms. Then call upon the Lord for the remedy and be ready to join the team!