Daily reading: 13 January
The Baptism of the Lord
Something to read
Now when all the people were baptised, and when Jesus also had been baptised and was praying, the heaven was opened.
- Luke 3: 21 from full reading Luke 3:15-17, 21-22.
Something to think about
Before beginning his ministry, Jesus appeared at the River Jordan – the physical border between the wilderness and the promised land, the metaphorical meeting place of heaven and earth, spiritual and material reality.
Jesus’ message was that the kingdom of heaven is among you, breaking in on you, within you. According to John chapter 3, the way to wake up to the kingdom within is to be born again, baptised by water and spirit.
Water in Aramaic is מיא – maya and spirit is רוּחַ – ruah. To be reborn is to descend into the maya of creation and rise in the ruha – breath, wind, spirit of God. It is to return to the beginning. When we return, we are re-booted and heaven is opened in us.
How do we return? Simply, we pray. When Jesus came up from the maya in the Jordan, he prayed and heaven opened. Later, Jesus would go out often into the wilderness to pray, to reconnect, return to the beginning. Christ calls us to do similarly. Stop. Be still. Plug back into God.
This is the beginning of everything Christian Aid does. It sends the root of action straight into the heart of God.
Something to do
Make time today to stop and reconnect with the kingdom of heaven within you. Notice the beauty of God’s gracious presence whenever you are truly present. Give thanks to God with awe and wonder.
Something to pray
Lord Jesus Christ, baptiser of my soul, open me, lead me, teach me to be always in your presence as you are in mine, so that I might discern your will and serve you in this world, wherever and whenever you call me. Amen.
Father Tim Ardouin is Church in Wales priest-in-charge in North Gower. He is a founder and director of the School of Christian Mysticism, a trustee for St Madoc Centre and Archbishop’s Officer for Interfaith Dialogue.
Published on 13 January 2021