To eavesdrop on conversations not intended to be heard by others is impolite.
When we eavesdrop, we are likely to hear three possible things. We may hear things that surprise us. We may hear things that we already know, and we may hear things that we might not want to know.
This week the author of John's Gospel gives us permission to eavesdrop on Jesus at prayer to the Father. We learn the close union between Jesus and the Father is what he wants for his disciples as well, and ultimately, for those who would follow them. The desire of this prayer reaches down the centuries to us.
In this passage, we may be surprised to hear that Jesus sees the world and those in it as a gift from the Father. "Father, they are your gift to me." This is a rare opportunity to know just how much Jesus treasured his disciples.
As we listen closely, we also hear that the path laid out for Jesus to follow is the path we're meant to follow as well. This includes suffering and death before resurrection - a message we might not want to hear!
Inevitably, eavesdropping leads us to make a decision as to what to do with what we've heard. At this Easter season, we are moving to welcome the Spirit, the source of unity between the Father and the Son. Because of the stirrings of the Spirit within us we will have the resources to live the "Christ life."
The Spirit of the Risen Christ leads us to action and contemplation. It is a spirit that responds to the needs of the poor and disenfranchised, prompting us to look at these brothers and sisters in Christ in a new way and listen to them with new ears.
From generation to generation, this new community, founded on Christ and rooted in his Spirit, will bring about a New Pentecost.
~ Jo-Ann Iannotti, OP