Leonardo da Vinci was one of the great geniuses of all time. Best known as an artist but he was also an inventor and a philosopher. One of da Vinci's epic works was his painting of the Last Supper. Every artist approaches every work a little bit differently. And for this work da Vinci wanted to find somebody a model to sit and pose for each of the people in the Last Supper. One Sunday, he was at Mass in the cathedral in Milan and he looked up into the choir loft and he saw a young man that looked just like he thought Jesus would have looked. He invited the young man to come and pose as the person of Jesus. In fact, he worked for three days painting Jesus into this picture of the Last Supper. And than he began to search for the disciples. Very quickly he found a James and a Peter and a John and a Matthew. In fact, in eleven months he found and painted eleven of the twelve disciples. All except Judas. Da Vinci couldn't find a Judas. He searched high and low, but he couldn't find a man that looked like what he thought Judas would have looked like. He walked through the streets of Milan hours, hours, hours a day, just searching the faces of men, looking for his Judas. He left the painting unfinished for eleven years. And one day... he found him. Walking along the street he found this man. He had this harshness in his face, this hardness in his eyes. He invited the man to come to his studio and pose for this painting. The man agreed, he came to the studio and he sat and da Vinci began to work. After a couple of hours, the man began to weep. Just inconsolably began to weep. Da Vinci stopped working and he said: 'Is something wrong? Am I doing something to upset you?' He looked up at da Vinci and he said: 'Master, do you not recognize me?' Da Vinci said: 'I'm sorry, I don't. Have we met before?' The man said: 'Yes. Eleven years ago, I posed for you in the same painting as the person of Jesus.'
In each of us there is a Jesus and a Judas. In each of us there is that best version of ourselves and that lesser version of ourselves, that second-rate version of ourselves , that worse version of ourselves. And the challenge is to celebrate that best version of ourselves and we can only really be the best version of ourselves in and through Jesus Christ. John the Baptist said: 'He must increase and I must decrease'. That's the challenge every day: it's to celebrate the best version of ourselves, it's to allowed Jesus to come more fully alive. So that we can become all that God created us to be. Are you ready to start celebrating Jesus more in your life?