Who are You?
John 1:6-8, 19-28
When John the Baptist is asked: “Who are you” (v. 19), he answers three times: “I am not….” A splendid answer! We are who we are not.
The risk is believing that we are who we think we are or who others think we are or want us to be. To reach the point of defining ourselves beyond our names, our delusions of omnipotence, our dreams, our frustrations, and all the expectations placed in us by others, is to finally arrive at the truth about ourselves.
John is simply a witness, called to let someone else’s light shine before him because he is not the light. Most people distrust those who consider themselves “enlightened” since that is the seed of every dictatorship.
A witness is called to reflect a light goes beyond self, that does not belong to self. That is why John defines himself as simply a “voice.” He does not say, “I am the Word,” but rather that he is the voice through which the Word can speak. He is at the service of the Word.
A voice without words is nonsense. The Word without a voice is mute.
This is John the Baptist’s identity: he is the voice that proclaims the Word, the Gospel. John is like the prophets of all times, whose task is to awaken consciences, to cry out that one cannot resign oneself to injustice, that one must opt for solutions that contribute to rejecting the logic of power because people are made for something else, namely: for truth, and truth is always intimately connected to freedom and justice.
Yesterday, as today, when truth is put to death, it rises from its own ashes to continue its journey.
If prophets are killed, they do not die; they become even more effective.
Taken from the book, Homilies, by Fr. Paolo Scquizzato
He has filled the hungry with good things,
and sent the rich away empty.