Come and See
The next day he saw Jesus coming towards him and declared, “Here is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! This is he of whom I said, ‘After me comes a man who ranks ahead of me because he was before me.’ I myself did not know him; but I came baptizing with water for this reason, that he might be revealed to Israel.” And John testified, “I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it remained on him. I myself did not know him, but the one who sent me to baptize with water said to me, ‘He on whom you see the Spirit descend and remain is the one who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ And I myself have seen and have testified that this is the Son of God.”
The next day John again was standing with two of his disciples, and as he watched Jesus walk by, he exclaimed, “Look, here is the Lamb of God!” The two disciples heard him say this, and they followed Jesus. When Jesus turned and saw them following, he said to them, “What are you looking for?” They said to him, “Rabbi” (which translated means Teacher), “where are you staying?” He said to them, “Come and see.” They came and saw where he was staying, and they remained with him that day. . . .
The next day Jesus decided to go to Galilee. He found Philip and said to him, “Follow me.” Now Philip was from Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter. Philip found Nathanael and said to him, “We have found him about whom Moses in the law and also the prophets wrote, Jesus son of Joseph from Nazareth.” Nathanael said to him, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” Philip said to him, “Come and see.” When Jesus saw Nathanael coming towards him, he said of him, “Here is truly an Israelite in whom there is no deceit!” Nathanael asked him, “Where did you come to know me?” Jesus answered, “I saw you under the fig tree before Philip called you.” Nathanael replied, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!” Jesus answered, “Do you believe because I told you that I saw you under the fig tree? You will see greater things than these.” And he said to him, “Very truly, I tell you, you will see heaven opened and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man.” (John 1:29-39b and 43-51)
When we are aware of the spiritual reality of this world, this changes the way that we see people and events. When we meet a person, for the first time or after multiple times, this has the potential to be a “recognition event” (Bourgeault, 2008) where we see the spiritual identity of the person who is present. In the first chapter of the Gospel of John, we hear John the Baptist use the words, “I myself have seen,” and “look.” And Jesus uses the phrase, “come and see.” Each succeeding moment comes quickly in the narrative. Each meeting is a “recognition event.” John must tell those who come out to see him who he is and his purpose. The spiritual identity of Jesus is disclosed to each person in a unique way. Philip asks Nathaniel to “come and see.” Jesus “saw” Nathaniel under the fig tree and tells him that he will “see greater things.” Because of the self- disclosure of John the Baptist and the self-disclosure of God in Christ, each event takes on a deeper meaning and evokes a deeper response in those present. Nathaniel recognizes Jesus as the son of God, the King of Israel. Jesus, standing before Nathaniel and the others, is recognized by, or through, his spiritual identity. His presence changes how they see him and must change for them, their understanding of the meaning of that particular moment in time.
Open our eyes to see, in every moment, the spiritual reality in our presence. Help us God, through your grace, to recognize we are always standing on hallowed ground, the ground of our being, the foundation of reality. When we meet another person, may we acknowledge the spiritual source of their being and may it evoke in us actions that are filled with the intention of love and always according to our faith. May we recognize you in all of the forms, all of the names, in all of the persons who come to us speaking truth and living according to the law of your love. Help us to see in Jesus Christ the path that leads to oneness with you, where our heart, our mind, our body, and our soul are united with your purpose. Amen.
From The Readings
2012-118 You are right and unselfish to seek ways to give and share through your own home and through the abundance you have been given. Over time you will see that there is always enough to do everything that is necessary. And you will find that sharing does not need to diminish the power and authority that have been granted to you through God. You have been hurt by authority and it is natural that you feel reluctant to use authority. You sometimes fear the abuse of power. It is your self-examination of your intention and of what you love that is the measure of your ability to use power and authority for the highest good. You and Jeffrey travel through the halls of authority and power in the world so that the consciousness of everyone can be raised to a higher intention. Through learning to ask for help, you will eventually become an instrument that functions according to the foundational law of the universe, and the question you’re asking for help will initiate the search for God and enlightenment in other human beings. It is by asking them to participate in spiritual work that your intention becomes known. The power of your intention will be clearly articulated and will be understood. When you ask for participation, all the resources will follow the participation, not before. Do you see? (Yes.) The difficulty and all the traps occur when there is desire for the resources before the participation. The purpose and the intention can only be understood through participation. Everything you do will show and point to and help others to see the ways in which the material world is a reflection of the inner being or condition of humanity. When you feel disgust or aversion, you are being made aware of the mismatch that exists between the inner and outer worlds.