Daily Reflection – Feb 3, 2016
Wednesday 3 February 2016
First Reading: 2 Samuel 24:2, 9-17
Lord, forgive the wrong I have done
Psalm 31(32):1-2, 5-7
Gospel Reading: Mark 6:1-6
Today’s Saint: Saint Blaise, Bishop and Martyr (Optional Memorial) and Saint Ansgar
Jesus departed from there and came to his native place,
accompanied by his disciples.
When the sabbath came he began to teach in the synagogue,
and many who heard him were astonished.
They said, “Where did this man get all this?
What kind of wisdom has been given him?
What mighty deeds are wrought by his hands!
Is he not the carpenter, the son of Mary,
and the brother of James and Joseph and Judas and Simon?
And are not his sisters here with us?”
And they took offense at him.
Jesus said to them,
“A prophet is not without honor except in his native place
and among his own kin and in his own house.”
So he was not able to perform any mighty deed there,
apart from curing a few sick people by laying his hands on them.
He was amazed at their lack of faith.
Where did this man get all this? What kind of wisdom has been given him? What mighty deeds are wrought by his hands? (Mark 6:2)
Have you ever found yourself discounting something that someone said because of her age or background or because you know this person too well to take her seriously? Clearly, this is what happened to Jesus when he visited his hometown of Nazareth.
On one level, it must have felt good to be back home. After traveling so much, he could finally hear familiar voices and see his old friends and family. He must also have felt good when he saw the initial excitement in the eyes of his former neighbors as he preached at the synagogue. From the Gospel reading, you could tell that his audience liked what they heard—at least at first.
But then they remembered his background and his family, and their excitement faded. Who is he to be talking with so much authority? We’ve known him since he was just a kid. How dare he tell us to repent! They turned off their ears to him and got angry. Jesus was able to do very little to help them.
Perhaps you have been in a similar situation. Someone, maybe a friend or family member, says something convicting to you, and it stings a bit too much. So in order to silence the message, you try to discount the messenger.
Don’t let that happen! God likes shaking us up a bit by using familiar or unlikely sources as his messengers. It’s one of his most effective ways of getting our attention. In the end, it’s all about our hearts, not the people speaking to us. If someone—anyone—says something that strikes at you, put it aside, and pray about it. Separate the message from the messenger, and ask if the message really does apply to you. Remember that God is everywhere and in everyone, even your children, your nosey neighbor, and your best friend.
Today, try to open your ears to those unlikely people who may have a message for you. Welcome God’s word, no matter who speaks it. It just may change your life.
“Jesus, help me to see you and hear you in all the people you put in my path today. Bring me closer to your glory through their words and their witness.”