God Revealed

"What you have hidden from the wise and learned you have revealed to little ones" (Matt 11:25).

As Jesus began his preaching, he realized that so-called wise and learned people did not seem to be able to grasp the Good News of God's love. It was too simple and direct for them. They were expecting theological ideas they could analyze and debate, something more sophisticated to match their intellectual discernment. 

But Jesus rejoices that simple and ordinary people immediately grasped the depth of his message and felt the presence of God in both his words and his person. Because of their lives of total dependence on God, they were already attuned to the everyday graces that can be found in the simple encounters and challenges of life. 

The Bible had a name for the little ones of God. These anawim were the salt of the earth, the poor who tilled the soil and cared for animals on the land, rising early to toil in the rhythm of the seasons and the patterns of the weather. We find them in the Beatitudes: Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the land; Blessed are the pure of heart, for they shall see God. 

The anamwim come to know God because they are like God. Without the added layers of self-conscious posing and sophistication, they let the original image and likeness of God shine through.  Their meekness is a reflection of the meekness of God, who never forces or compels people to obey, who patiently and silently accompanies us while we work out our life stories. Their humility reveals God's gentle guidance and forbearance, even when we fail and have to start over. 

In effect, the poor and simple were drawn to Jesus because he was one of them, an anawim who trusted totally in God and went with the flow of life through each dsy, accepting what came, grateful for every blessing, however small. enduring life's hardships and never giving up. 

The image of the yoke was something they understood. Two beasts of burden yoked together shared the load evenly. Jesus was inviting them to yoke their lives to his, to get in the harness with him, and he would help carry their burdens with them. Such a simple image, perhaps too earthy for the wise and learned, but with profound implications for the people who labored and were weary of life itself.  This was good news, indeed. 

Jesus offers each of us the same intimate, side-by-side companionship. God's love is ever-present, ever-ending and abundant . It can seem too good to be true, but if we learn to be a little one, we will never lack for God's help. .