43The next day Jesus decided to go to Galilee. He found Philip and said to him, “Follow me.” 44Now Philip was from Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter. 45Philip found Nathanael and said to him, “We have found him about whom Moses in the law and also the prophets wrote, Jesus son of Joseph from Nazareth.” 46Nathanael said to him, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” Philip said to him, “Come and see.” 47When Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him, he said of him, “Here is truly an Israelite in whom there is no deceit!” 48Nathanael asked him, “Where did you get to know me?” Jesus answered, “I saw you under the fig tree before Philip called you.” 49Nathanael replied, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!” 50Jesus answered, “Do you believe because I told you that I saw you under the fig tree? You will see greater things than these.” 51And he said to him, “Very truly, I tell you, you will see heaven opened and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man.”
Where did you get to know me?
I remember asking God that one time (when I had been quiet enough to hear from God). How do you know me? Are you sure it is me that you want?
In John's account, Jesus simply told Philip to follow and Philip immediately wanted to share the Good news with a skeptical loved one. In doing so, he immediately began working in the great ministry of making disciples to which each of us has been called. Imagine being the one that Jesus chooses because ‘in him there is no deceit’. Many of us are chosen by Jesus and believe that he may not know us well enough. And we ask where did you get to know me. And Jesus answers I saw you under the fig tree, I saw you on your knees, I saw you serving others, I saw you longing, I saw you wanting, I saw you needing. The truth is that Jesus sees us in ways that we never even see ourselves. And God loves us anyhow. God calls us and desires for us to experience things even greater than we can imagine.
During this season of Lent, as we sit under the fig tree waiting, longing, needing and wanting, let our desires be to see the person in ourselves that God sees. During this time I will get to know me -
Prayer: Gracious and Loving God, I come and I quiet myself before you...
Toni Belin-Ingram, Pastor
Greater Smith Chapel AME Church