It can be pretty easy to discern if a speaker is talking about something they really know or just reciting what they’ve learned from others. New teachers often start out reciting, but as the teaching itself deepens one’s knowledge, we teachers grow in the authority of our words over time. In my early years, I recall thinking, “Wow, I didn’t know that!” when I heard a new insight or connection come out of my mouth. When the words, ideas and connections make their way down into the deepest recesses of our minds and hearts, we can speak with true authority. Jesus’ authority, on the other hand, was of an even greater order of magnitude than that of a seasoned teacher.
The authority with which Jesus taught was rooted in his divinity. His preparation for his ministry was nurtured by his time with the Spirit in the desert. Jesus’ desert time was intense. When I find myself in the spiritual desert, I do pray to emerge from it with some tiny fraction of what Jesus gained there
Living Faith provides brief daily Catholic devotions based on one of the Mass readings of the day. Published new each quarter, these reflections are written by women and men from a variety of backgrounds - lay people as well as clergy and religious. Learn more.
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