“He (Andrew) first found his own brother Simon and told him, ‘We have found the Messiah’ (which is translated Anointed). Then he brought him to Jesus.” (John 1:41-42).
The other night, at my children’s primary school, there was a welcome disco.
At this disco, all the children and their families were invited to come along to school on one Friday night to dance, buy food and drinks and to join together in community to celebrate the start of the year… And yes, this year the welcome disco was significantly delayed due to COVID-19 restrictions!
This is my children’s first year at this primary school, and so it was with great enthusiasm that they dragged my husband and me along so that they could show us where their classrooms were and where they liked to play and so that we could meet their new friends. While we were there, my children – particularly my daughter – spent the evening bringing across an array of children who were their friends to introduce them to us. Of those children, my daughter appears to have one particularly special friend, who is a little boy who spent the evening following my daughter around and listening to her instructions like a well-trained puppy!
Now, there is a story that is attached to that little boy and my daughter... You see, prior to my daughter’s arrival at that school, that little boy was being quite significantly bullied by one of the other little boys in the class. But, then along came my daughter. You see, my daughter is the youngest member in our family and she has two older brothers, so it was not a big deal for her to stand up for herself and others – she is very well-versed in that at home! And so it was that earlier this year, my daughter very quickly set the bully in his place and appointed herself unofficial protector of her new friend.
And I have been thinking about my daughter at that disco and her friend and the bully because she reminds me of Saint Andrew…
You see, Saint Andrew was a disciple of Saint John the Baptist, and it was Saint Andrew who after first hearing Christ speak told his brother Saint Simon Peter about Christ… “Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter, was one of the two who heard John and followed Jesus. He first found his own brother Simon and told him, ‘We have found the Messiah’ (which is translated Anointed). Then he brought him to Jesus.” (John 1:40-42).
And this was sort of like what was happening with my children – and especially with my little girl – at the disco that night… You see, on that night my little girl was little bit like Saint Andrew... My daughter loves me as Saint Andrew loved Christ, and because she loves me and feels loved by me, she wanted to bring all her friends to see me so that they too could experience that love! And just as Saint Andrew brought to Christ people who were weak and despised by society – mere fishermen – my daughter brought to me her friend, a little boy who had been bullied.
And it is more than that. You see, because my daughter, by being my daughter, has learned how to be in the world from me (and her father), she knew how to support her friend and help the bully to stop bullying by confronting him about his behaviour. And that too is like Saint Andrew and all the apostles. You see, they learned to be in the world from Christ because they were disciples of God. And that meant that an ever increasing array of people learned how to be disciples of Christ simply by interacting with Saint Andrew.
And so, as I reflect on that disco, and I remember my daughter and her friends and the bully, I have to wonder… In the narrative of my life on this earth, which part have I assigned myself? And I – as my daughter did – I have adopted the role of Saint Andrew – for I would give much to bring others to my Beloved as Saint Andrew did… For in doing so, Saint Andrew changed the world!
For with prayer, I stand on Holy Ground where everything is clear. Here. At the Foot of the Cross.