Who is your role model?

This is the beginning of a new year, and we all desire a new “start,” a better and more successful life. It’s the first Sunday of this year, and today’s Gospel presents us with the most appropriate role model – that of Saint John.

He is called the “earthly angel and heavenly man” in his Akathist, because he lived an angelic life for 30 years in the desert. “And John wore a garment of camel’s hair and a leather belt around his waist, and he ate locusts and wild honey.” And when he went out to preach, he taught people without looking at their appearance, clothing, or position, but he boldly and mercilessly pierced each person’s soul with his word, like a dagger, to win them all for the Kingdom that would be brought by Christ the Messiah!

My dear ones,

We humans make a mistake by taking our role models from TV stars, singers, cultural or uncultured individuals, from football players, politicians… basically, from sinful people, instead of taking holy models. Very few people today choose as their role model the one who deserves our greatest admiration – the one of whom the Lord Himself said, “Among those born of women, there is no one greater than John” (Luke 7:28).

What made John the Baptist the greatest Saint of our Church?

– His providential birth (Luke 1:5-25);

– His life in the wilderness, from infancy until the end of his life;

-His unique role in the economy of salvation as the “lamp of light,” the Forerunner of the Lord;

– His courageous preaching, free from any complexes in the face of authority (Luke 3);

– By baptizing the Messiah;

– By choosing death over compromise with secular power (Matthew 14:1-12).

There is no better role model for faithful men than St. John the Baptist, and for women, the best role model is the Theotokos. They are the perfect models for us, Christians! That is why they are depicted on the right and left sides of the icon of the Savior – the Judge, as they are the best examples of how we should live on this earth.

From St. John, we can learn perfect asceticism, a pure life, complete devotion to the Lord, courage, and above all, uprightness and moral principles – virtues that should not be absent in true Christians.

It is worth noting the models recommended by the Apostle Paul in the Epistle to the Hebrews:

“And what more shall I say? For time would fail me to tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel, and the prophets who, through faith, conquered kingdoms, administered justice, obtained promises, shut the mouths of lions, quenched the power of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, were made strong out of weakness, became mighty in war, put foreign armies to flight. Women received back their dead by resurrection…” (Hebrews 11:32-35).

Whom have you taken as your model? Who is your role model?


Bishop of Slatina and Romanati

Source: http://episcopiaslatinei.ro

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