John 20:30-31

Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in his name.

There is not a syllable in John that is there by accident.  Everything line, every incident, every story and every word is chosen with careful precision by a great writer who means to pack as much into as few words as possible.  John is the most supremely economical writer in the New Testament, able to convey oceans of meaning in a thimbleful of words (as, for example, the awesome sentence, "Jesus wept" does.)  Because of this, nothing in John is trivial.  Every word is there to serve the purpose given today's verse.  And that's because Jesus himself never drew a single breath without his eye fixed on exactly the same purpose.  He still doesn't.  To follow Christ is ultimately to know that nothing is ordinary.  Not a word of your life is trivial either.  It is all charged with meaning.

Mark Shea


Mark P. Shea is a popular Catholic writer and speaker. The author of numerous books, his most recent work is The Work of Mercy (Servant) and The Heart of Catholic Prayer (Our Sunday Visitor). Mark contributes numerous articles to many magazines, including his popular column “Connecting the Dots” for the National Catholic Register. Mark is known nationally for his one minute “Words of Encouragement” on Catholic radio. He also maintains the Catholic and Enjoying It blog and regularly blogs for National Catholic Register. He lives in Washington state with his wife, Janet, and their four sons.

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