When many of his disciples heard it, they said, “This teaching is difficult; who can accept it?” But Jesus, being aware that his disciples were complaining about it, said to them, “Does this offend you? Then what if you were to see the Son of Man ascending to where he was before? It is the spirit that gives life; the flesh is useless. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life. But among you there are some who do not believe.”
For Jesus knew from the first who were the ones that did not believe, and who was the one that would betray him. And he said, “For this reason I have told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted by the Father.” Because of this many of his disciples turned back and no longer went about with him.
So Jesus asked the twelve, “Do you also wish to go away?” Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom can we go? You have the words of eternal life. We have come to believe and know that you are the Holy One of God.”
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
Who–or what–do you turn to when things get difficult? For some of us, there might be a trusted friend who you can call at all hours. For others, it might be the escape of binge watching a tv series. Still others might look to food or drink to comfort us. But all of these things, even the best of them, are finite. Peter, the apostle who alternates between really understanding Jesus and totally missing the mark, gets it here. When Jesus asks him where he will turn, Peter replies “Lord, to whom can we go?”
In talking about discerning our path in life, St. Ignatius says that we must first examine the orientation of our lives. Am I fundamentally oriented toward God, or away from God? Whether we are struggling with a decision, facing adversity, or seeking to follow Jesus’ example more closely, may we orient ourselves toward Jesus and be able to say to him, like Peter, “You have the words of eternal life. We have come to believe and know that you are the Holy One of God.”
—The Jesuit Prayer team
O Christ Jesus,
may your death be my life,
your labor my rest,
your human weakness my strength,
your confusion my glory.
—St. Pierre Favre, SJPlease share the Good Word with your friends!