Year B: 10th Sunday in Ordinary Time
The Gospel: Mark 3: 20-35
Todayís Gospel is complex and raises many issues - some of them very uncomfortable as we see Jesus seeming to reject his own mother and family.
It must have taken many people by surprise when Jesus gave up the family business and became a man with a mission determined to preach the Good News of Godís Kingdom. It seems that even his mother had forgotten the words spoken by the angel - that her child would be great and called the Son of the Most High. That had been thirty years before and, apart from strange happenings at the time of his birth and a disappearance on the road home from Jerusalem, all the rest had been as normal.
This change - the single-mindedness with which Jesus had accepted the challenge - and the fact that it seemed to be overwhelming his life were legitimate cause for concern.
The scribes too, many of whom may have known Jesus as a worshipper in their synagogues, were struggling to work out just who this person was. To them, the seemingly normal carpenter suddenly turned miracle-worker and exorcist, was an enigma. He was not of the priestly caste - he was not learned in the Law - how could he possibly be doing this in the name of God? In their experience, the only people who spoke as he did were people possessed with spirits - and evil spirits at that.
We forget that he was not always welcomed or accepted in his own day - that he puzzled people - made them uncomfortable - caused those closest to him grave concern: was he ill? where would all this lead?
Jesus continues to confound expectations. We are perhaps so familiar with his words and actions that we risk losing the challenge they might be holding for us.
Suppose the same single-mindedness was to be asked of us? Suppose we were called to proclaim the Kingdom with real earnestness and commitment? Suppose we were driven to live our lives wholly for God? Or suppose this was asked of someone close to us?
We may find ourselves uncomfortable at the prospect - what would happen to our jobs or families?
However, such single-minded commitment does not necessarily mean leaving all that behind. It may, though, indicate a way to live our lives - seeing all we say and do as having the potential to build the Kingdom - even when that attitude to life causes consternation among those around us.
What does it mean for me?
© 2006 Wellspring