Understanding: Totally Engaged in the Life of Christ

Peter chose to participate in the life and death of Christ. He asked to be crucified upside down.
Statue in the Cathedral in Frankfurt, Germany. 


Luke 8:9    Then his disciples asked him what this parable meant. 10 He said, “To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of God; but to others I speak in parables, so that
‘looking they may not perceive,
and listening they may not understand.’


Jesus had just told the parable of the sower and the disciples were now asking for an explanation. Before he would explain it to them he had some teaching to do with them. Jesus spoke in parables because only those who were willing to be totally engaged in the life of Christ would understand. Otherwise, the stories of Jesus just went in one ear and out the other. Most people would never understand what it was that he was saying to them. When one is totally engaged in the life of Christ, then the eye of the mind is opened, and all of the senses become heightened, learning to take in the teaching of Christ that leads us beyond our human intellect. 


There is much in the word of God the we fail to understand and so we find ourselves with the disciples, asking Jesus for an explanation. Instead, what we receive is an invitation. Understanding comes from participation in God. 

The more that I hang out with my husband, the more that I become like him. We begin to think and act alike, having like-minded conversations about our lives. The more I become engaged in my husband’s life, the more I can read the little signals that let me know how he’s doing today and whether he’s feeling well. 

The more that we hang our with our Lord, the more that we become like him. I being to think and act like Christ because I have like-minded conversations about life. The more I become engaged in the life of Christ, the more I read the little signals that let me know how the things of this world make his heart ache and how I can respond. 

Understanding the mysteries of God comes from participation in the life of Christ. The disciples were invited into this type of a relationship and they began to see that the world could not comprehend what they were being taught. If we are really in tune with Jesus we will understand but many will simply look past his teachings and say, “huh?”. There will be no comprehension. But for those who are totally engaged in the life of Christ, every sense will be on heightened alert to realize and recognize what Jesus is saying. The parables become beautiful three-dimensional, fully colored realities into which we step, and there we become totally engaged in the life of Christ in this world.


Lord, I want to know you more. Amen. 


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