By Br. Junel Pedroso, OP

September 16, 2018

24th Sunday in Ordinary Time

IS 50:5-9A, PS 116:1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 8-9, JAS 2:14-18, Mk. 8: 27-35

“Who are you to tell me who I am? I know myself better than you do.” However, could the self ascertain who we truly are?

How we view ourselves is a product of constant interaction with others. Our personality is a reflection of the people around us. We project an image of ourselves that would be acceptable to others, and in return, other people provide us with feedbacks on how we can improve our image. Thus, self-knowledge is a by-product of social interaction and communication.

The Lord wanted to know how others see him so he asked his disciples. He received different feedbacks based on how they have interacted with the Lord. Those who follow him for his miraculous deeds and teachings saw him as a prophet. Peter, however, saw the Lord in a different way that made his response more intimate and personal: “You are the Messiah.”

This kind of knowledge and self-awareness is what the Lord also asks from us. Our self-awareness must come from an intimate relationship with others. If we anchor our self-awareness to shallow interactions with others, then we would have a hard time finding out who we really are and what our mission in life is.

Self-awareness is only possible through the eyes of those who love us and those who are capable of telling us the truth that could build us up. We could only be aware of who we are and what we ought to do if we cultivate genuine intimate relationships.

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