Luke 9:57-62 (ESV)
At that time, as Jesus was going along the road, someone said to Him, “I will follow you wherever you go.” 58 And Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.” 59 To another he said, “Follow me.” But he said, “Lord, let me first go and bury my father.” 60 And Jesus said to him, “Leave the dead to bury their own dead. But as for you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God.” 61 Yet another said, “I will follow you, Lord, but let me first say farewell to those at my home.” 62 Jesus said to him, “No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.”
Glory be to Jesus Christ!
“I will follow you wherever you go.” The call to follow our Lord God and Saviour Jesus Christ is the call to which we respond in our hearts at our baptism and our entire Christian lives must be dedicated to hearing and responding to that call. It is a demanding call that we are called to answer daily. It is one that we often stubbornly refuse to heed as the siren calls of the world beckon us to things that offer us pleasure, ease, and supposed contentment and fulfillment. Yet these things of the world are fleeting. What the world offers us only gives us momentary satisfaction, offering us the proverbial thin gruel of materialism, consumerism, and an inward focused self-gratification. This is not of Christ. The momentary satisfaction that comes from following sinful desires is an illusion and a lie, something that quickly turns to disillusionment, emptiness, and regret. Through prayer and regular participation in the sacramental life of the Church we continually go from grace to grace, building upon that grace received at our baptism, and we are fortified by the Holy Mysteries so that we might learn to know that true contentment and fulfillment is to be found in following Our Lord wherever He leads us.
To follow Christ demands a profound and true exercise of our free will. It is profound and true because it is only in following Him that we can be truly free. We are truly free when we offer our free will to God so that we might be united with Him. Our Lord calls us to join Him. He calls us to join Him in His ministry in Galilee, bringing Him to those we meet in our daily lives: the poor, the sick, the children and the aged, and the doubtful. He calls us to join Him in the Temple as He teaches and worships; and so we are called to lead others to the true worship of the Most Holy Trinity, One God in Three Persons. He calls us to join Him at Calvary and to bear our cross; in doing so we are called to self-sacrifice and a self-emptying humility through which we put others before ourselves, serving them, and earnestly praying for their salvation. And Our Lord calls us to join Him on the Third Day, to proclaim His Glorious Resurrection to the world, living our faith openly and in true joy by which we may draw others to Christ. This is our baptismal call. This is our vocation. May Our Lord grant us grace upon grace that we might heed His call and follow Him so that He might draw all people unto Himself.