And here, as a little bit more midrash, I can’t help but wonder if we might not sometimes act like the hometown crowd in the synagogue that day. Do we see ourselves as Jesus’ favorites? Don’t we assume some privileged status when it comes to Jesus, expecting Jesus to always choose our nation, our party, our side, our church? Frankly, this leaves us in danger of being passed over because when we assume our privilege we fail to recognize our own brokenness and our hurt. And then we rage! We rage to avoid, to disguise, and to compensate for what hurts us. We rage to avoid the emptiness and hunger within and when our privilege is threatened. We rage so we do not have to face ourselves but behind our rage is brokenness, and who here doesn’t know what that’s like? … More What’s Behind the Rage?
Jesus’ mission continues today through each of us and all who are baptized into his mystical body. Jesus strives still to live out the mission: bringing good news to those who don’t have any, setting free those chained in captivity, opening blind eyes, helping the oppressed find a life, and announcing the year of God’s favor. … More The Spirit of the Lord is upon US!
May it be our prayer today that Christ will more closely unite not only with the whole church but specifically with each congregation and each individual. In such a prayer we will seek an unbreakable connection of mutual love – love that not only will show us clearly what God is like but also will lead us to the fullness of Christ. We will seek in our hearts and souls to enter into the new, abundant life of our Lord Christ.
… More God of Gracious, Abundant, Extravagance
Denying ourselves is about aligning ourselves with God and the divine purpose, rather than aligning ourselves with the Empire and the forces of oppression. Taking up our cross is about choosing the qay of Jesus, about accepting the invitation to discipleship, no matter the cost. … More Taking Up Our Crosses
“Who do you say that I am?” Who has he been in your past? Who is Jesus now? Who do you hope Jesus will be in your future? These are questions to ponder for a lifetime. What religious language have you inherited and what traditions have been passed down? What “truths” and assumptions are we clinging to simply because they’re familiar and safe? Are we afraid to live the question because it might change us?
Peter, I think, ultimately understands that Jesus is just as powerfully present in the questions as in the answer. To love what is unsolved is not to deny Jesus his Lordship. It is to allow Jesus to enter more deeply into your heart than any impersonal claim about him will ever do. Jesus Invites us today to live the question, and he asks it over and over again to each one of us, every day, in love. … More Live the Question
When Jesus talks about the heavy yoke, he is talking to those on the spiritual journey on whom a heavy burden had been placed by the Pharisees. Jesus promises those who follow after him a light burden and yoke that is good to bear. To come to Jesus is to discover that the task of getting it all right under the burden of the law is replaced by the absolute gift of God’s abiding presence. … More The Yoke of Jesus