(Jn 21: 20-25)
Peter turned and saw the disciple following whom Jesus loved,
the one who had also reclined upon his chest during the supper
and had said, “Master, who is the one who will betray you?”
When Peter saw him, he said to Jesus, “Lord, what about him?”
Jesus said to him, “What if I want him to remain until I come?
What concern is it of yours?
You follow me.”
So the word spread among the brothers that that disciple would not die.
But Jesus had not told him that he would not die,
just “What if I want him to remain until I come?
What concern is it of yours?”
It is this disciple who testifies to these things
and has written them, and we know that his testimony is true.
There are also many other things that Jesus did,
but if these were to be described individually,
I do not think the whole world would contain the books
that would be written.
Until the very end, Peter exhibited a human quality that is guileless and devoid of pretension. He may be the acclaimed leader of the Twelve but that does not make him impervious to insecurity and jealousy. Called by the Risen Lord for a secret conference, he still got distracted by the Beloved Disciple who tagged along even if from a distance. He has to clarify to the Lord his status.
It is funny sometimes how we cannot bask in the undivided attention of God without checking how others fare in His eyes. We can not relax in God’s love. We need to be affirmed that we are truly loved every time. This anxiety comes from a troubled heart. After all, in contrast to the Beloved Disciples steadfast love, Peter in a moment of weakness had betrayed the Lord. He cannot accept the unconditional love of the Risen Lord.
Fr. Paulson V. Veliyannoor, CMF
Lord, You invite each of us to follow You in our state of life. As a husband and father in the family, God wants me to follow by fulfilling the duty of caring for the family, bringing up the children, the couple sacrificed and love each other. As a member of the union, God wants me to be a sociable person, to make efforts to the common good. As a part of society, God wants me to be responsible to fellow human beings and to the environment in which we live.
Lord, help me courageously to follow God by fulfilling our daily duties and responsibilities. Amen.