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  • Sarah Raad

Then

“Philip said, ‘Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us.’” (John 14:8).

Saint Philip (Peter Paul Rubens)

There is a passage in the Gospel of Saint John that recalls a conversation between Christ and His disciples. In the conversation, first Saint Thomas speaks to Christ (and is answered) and then – later – Saint Philip asks for a sign of Christ’s divinity.


And I have been reflecting on the conversation between Christ and Saint Philip for some time now…


“Philip said, ‘Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us.’ Jesus answered: ‘Don’t you know Me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen Me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? Don’t you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in Me? The words I say to you I do not speak on my own authority. Rather, it is the Father, living in Me, who is doing His work. Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in Me; or at least believe on the evidence of the works themselves.” (John 14:8-12)…


And I have been thinking about Saint Philip’s audacity in asking Christ who is God the Son – who he had seen perform many miracles with his very own eyes – to provide for him a sign of Christ’s Divinity! I can imagine the comfort that Philip felt in the Holy presence of God. I can imagine the love he felt. After all, only someone who feels truly comfortable and loved could ever have the audacity to ask for so ridiculous a thing… “‘Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us.’”


Seriously? THEN – despite everything that I have already seen – THEN, when you have finally showed me one more thing God, THEN and only THEN will I believe in You…


That is basically what Philip said to God Himself.


Saint Philip basically said, I know that You have done all of these miraculous things, but now I need further proof that you are God. All those other things just simply do not count. You know that time when You raised Lazarus from the dead, or turned water into wine, or multiplied the loaves and fish? Remember that time when you cured the blind and the deaf and the dumb? Remember when you cast out demons? Yes Lord, remember all of that? Well, that was not quite enough to convince me… I am going to need one more…

And I have been reflecting on this conversation of Philip’s – this audacity… For it is no worse than my own.

You see, I too have seen God work countless miracles in my own life. How many times have I almost had a terrible and serious accident? How many times have my husband, my children, my loved ones narrowly avoided serious injury? How many times have things that seemed impossible or terrible sorted themselves out even at the last moment?


And yet, I too ask my Beloved for another sign because only THEN will I believe…


And in so asking, and in reflecting upon Christ’s response to Saint Philip, I see His INFINITE kindness in responding to Saint Philip so patiently… He did not ridicule Saint Philip. He did not mock him. He did not get angry or upset. He spoke to Saint Philip instead – with love and understanding.


And when I think that – I bow my head in shame… For my Beloved gives me countless miracles every single day – and when I ask for more, He speaks to me with INFINITE kindness and compassion… And still I only want to believe after just one more. Only THEN will I believe…


For with prayer, I stand on Holy Ground where everything is clear. Here. At the Foot of the Cross.

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