Sunday's Gospel reading is Mark 9:38-50, and to follow today's reflection, you'll want to
read it first here
He was casting out demons.
He was speaking, publicly...
Words of prophecy. Challenge.
A call to action.
Words that got to the heart of things.
Words that cut through the noise of life and spoke what was real.
Words that told the truth.
Words that healed.
Words of God.
The disciples missed it.
Instead of listening,
they analyzed credentials.
They questioned credibility.
They said, "you aren't one of us."
They said, "You have no claim on the truth."
Worried about power, position, and authority, the disciples closed their ears to the holy and powerful truth that was in their midst.
But Jesus didn't miss a thing.
Jesus believed the words and saw the deeds and celebrated the demons being gone.
Jesus reminded them that they were stronger together than they were apart, even when they were different. Jesus reminded them that the truth is the truth, whoever speaks it, whatever their credentials, whatever the timeframe or situation.
And Jesus reminded them to take care of the little ones. The ones who are last, lost, least, and left-out. The ones who have been hurt and who are hurting. Don't you dare get in their way, he says. Or, in his actual words, "If any of you put a stumbling block before one of these little ones who believe in me, it would be better for you if a great millstone were hung around your neck and you were thrown into the sea."
There is power in the truth.
May God gives us the ears to hear it when it is in our midst.
May God help us to say, "I believe you. I honor you. How can I cast out demons with you?"
May God give us hearts open to the voices of "the little ones," so that the Word of God may be among us and shape the world in which we live.
Peace be with you,