I’m finding myself deeply struck by the first recorded words of Jesus in the book of John. A seemingly simple question: What are you seeking? Seemingly simple and yet, I feel it is an invitation more than a question.
The book of John opens with some famous words that are rich in meaning and help set the stage for us understanding who Jesus is and His origin. John kicks us off with an existential defintion proclaiming that Jesus is the Word of God Himself and that He was around in the beginning. We begin to see the spectacular nature of God and Jesus and the mystery is laid before us.
Then John, the Apostle of Jesus, introduces us to John, the forerunner of Jesus. This quirky cousin of Jesus whose life is consumed with proclaiming the coming of the Savior. John goes around preaching the coming Christ with complete assurity in His supreme power. In just a few verses, we know that Jesus is something extra ordinary and that He is deemed worthy to follow. And so, follow Him is exactly what people start to do.
Now, after the beautiful build up and introduction of Jesus, I imagine something profound in His first documented words and instead we see what appears to be a random question, what are you seeking? I don’t know about you, but I have glossed over that question probably 50 times or more. It seems unimportant and yet, today it feels invitational.
What are you seeking? Jesus knows that they are following Him for a reason, they have a need. I wonder if He’s asking this question to see if they already have faith? Perhaps He wants to see if they are self aware enough to know their needs. Or, maybe it was a way of entering into relationship with them. It was a door opening into their lives, a light shinning into their darkness. Jesus is leaning in to these new friends and asking for them to share deep desires.
What are you seeking? When you come to Jesus, what are you seeking, what are you hoping to find? A Savior? A Redeemer? Or something simple like a friend? Or something life changing like a reason to live? Whatever reason you are following Jesus I think He is still asking the same question, What are you seeking? I pray you take hold of the invitation and lean into this man, Jesus.