Daily Reflection – 7/11/19
Jesus sent out the Twelve with the following instructions, “As you go, make this proclamation: ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ Cure the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, drive out demons. Without cost you have received; without cost you are to give. Do not take gold or silver or copper for your belts; no sack for the journey, or a second tunic, or sandals, or walking stick. The laborer deserves his keep. Whatever town or village you enter, look for a worthy person in it, and stay there until you leave. As you enter a house, wish it peace. If the house is worthy, let your peace come upon it; if not, let your peace return to you. Whoever will not receive you or listen to your words — go outside that house or town and shake the dust from your feet. Amen, I say to you, it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah on the Day of Judgment than for that town.” ( Matthew 10:7-15)
There are several saving messages in today’s Gospel. I am struck by this message first : “Without cost you are to give.”
On its face, the words tell us that we are to offer the Gospel to others free of charge. But this action of freely giving the Gospel, includes also giving of ourselves freely. The simple fact is that the Gospel is all about a total free gift to us which requires a total free gift of ourselves to others. The Gospel is a person, Jesus Christ. And when He comes and lives in us freely, we must then become a total and free gift to others.
To be completely willing to “give” it is summed up in the word “detachment”. The call is to detach ourselves from anything which will prevent us from engaging in mission. The truth is that most of us are not willing to detach ourselves from the pleasures of life. It is one thing to “live life to the full.” But, in truth, that becomes an excuse. We can not be so busy living life to the full that we fail to see the difference between living in the beauty of the simple gifts of life versus using the material things of life to amplify the beauty of the moment. That’s a fine line that needs to be walked. The danger is that we are surrounded by too many excuses in today’s world that prevent us from stepping out and acting in the name of Christ. They range from the busy-ness of daily life to the demands of working and raising a family to the excesses of society that affluence brings. We all need to ask ourselves when was the last time we stepped out of our lives and our comfort zone and truly did for another that which He would have us do.
And that leads us to the third message . . . “The kingdom of heaven is at hand.” I believe that the kingdom of God IS at hand. We are called to be his missionaries today, at this moment, at this hour. Our ultimate judgement is based on what we do in this kingdom. It is far more than attending Church, or keeping the precepts of any Church. No, it lies in the quality of what we do for our brothers and sisters who surround us. It lies in the quality of what we do in His name. It is found every time we extend ourselves to another. It is found in every uncomfortable moment when we die a bit to ourselves and live a bit in the hearts of another. It is found in those times when we recognize that much has been given to each of us and much must be returned.
To love Him is to live Him.
Prayer of The Day
Lord, may the joy and truth of the gospel transform my life that I may witness it to those around me. Grant that I may spread your truth and your light wherever I go.
God gives us his word that we may have life in him. He wills to work through and in each of us for his glory. God shares he word with us and he commissions us to speak it boldly and simply to others. Do you witness the truth and joy of the gospel by word and example to those around you?