Beads of Joy 04-12-10
You Must Be Born A New
©2010 James Dacey, Jr. SFO
What a absolutely exciting gospel today is. It is in this gospel reading that Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews questions Jesus. Today we are reading John 3:1-8 (Nicodemus Questions Jesus). Even though Nicodemus was from the opposing side of Jesus' teaching and tended to stay on the side of the Pharisees; there was something about Jesus that Nicodemus was drawn to. He could not grasp this new birth in the spirit, he wanted to understand, but could not. He also tried to make sure Jesus would get a fair trial, and he also helped bury Jesus with some sort of dignity. I guess we might say, he was one of the first defenders of our Lord. So much wisdom is in the "born again" thought as to how Jesus was explaining all this to Nicodemus. We need to be students of Jesus like Nicodemus was so trying to be. I think if time was there and Jesus was only imprisoned, Nicodemus in the long run would have defended Jesus more openly. But then in God's will Jesus had to die, so the timing was set perfect in God's will, not our own earthly compassionate one.
Born again in the Spirit. Now how do you see that statement in your own life? We all must experience it in some form, in order for us to be able to claim it in our own lives. It doesn't have to be dramatic, or anything super natural. Sometimes just the experience of having our eyes wide open, to what Jesus Christ has done for us through his death, is enough to change us and draw us closer to Him. This new birth isn't like putting on a new shirt, or changing our hair color; this all goes way beyond all that. This new birth means, "I don't even recognize me anymore." in a good way. Our old ways, our sinful habits that offend our Lord, our disrespect for Him on Sunday by making no time to be with Him, all that is gone. The new you only wants to love Him, honor Him and serve Him, and you will think about Him constantly. I don't know what true born again means by their definition; but as for me I can say my whole life got turned upside down and I openly, very willingly embraced it, and I was and am who I am today because of it. The old me is gone, done, buried and dead forever. The new me is born with Jesus at the center of my every thought, my every action.
It is through this very experience that my life has embraced the Joy that God has pumped into my life, my heart and my soul and straight into my blood stream. A joy that only God can give anyone who will openly receive Him. On a personal note about the "change" I have experienced is mind boggling. I do mean that "mind boggling", I never got trapped in a worldly life of drinking, or drugs or anything that would physically hurt me or those I love; but before Jesus, that B.C. part of my life. The B.C. for me was the Before Christ years. Jesus was there, He always was, I just never seen Him. I never realized He was there till I got past the B.C. part of my life and I looked back. Sometimes the most important things, the most important people, the most important facts, stare us right in the face and we don't flinch because we don't see it. Maybe it's because we don't know what to look for, or we just don't know we are suppose to be looking for it. I don't know, either way, in my life, it wasn't until I allowed my old self to die; so that the new me in Christ was able to come to life, and lead me to Jesus. To be truly born again, we must die to that old self we are before we embrace Jesus.
All things are possible my friends. Like I was starting to say, I am grateful that I was never got into anything that would physically kill me. But in all honesty, my desires and my habits revolved around myself, way more than I care to admit. Talk about being arrogant and proud, that was me. Yes I was kind, and friendly, even respectful, but all I use to think about was my own success. My own pride, and how was I going to look before everyone only mattered; my clothes needed to look new, and my cars had to be sharp, and of cause my pockets had to always be filled with cash to flash. A lot of it was phony, a lot of it was a show so that I got the respect and the wows I urned for. That sounds crazy I know, but let me tell you, pride demands a lot of praise every single day. I use to wash and clean my car every day (I use to be at my dads shop most everyday, so I could, many use to tell me I was crazy obsessed with it). Those cars of the past, meant a lot to me, they were an extension of my pride. This is sick I know. But see how we need to be born again, out with the old me and in with the new me. I pray that you experience that true born again feeling that wipes the slate clean in your life and before God; giving you a super fresh feeling of wanting and desiring only to love Him, honor Him and to serve Him for the rest of your life.
Your brother in Christ Jesus & His Most Blessed Mother,
Jim (The Rosary Man) Dacey Jr SFO