Today’s Gospel: Mark 6:1-6
Jesus’ own hometown folks were offended by Him! They lacked the faith to accept His authority. He had taken His turn to read and teach during the Sabbath service. “Where did this man get all this?” they asked each other. They knew where he came from. They knew his family. They didn’t understand how one of their own came by the supreme knowledge He expressed and His ability to teach in the synagogue. So they reacted with ill will.
It is easier to be critical of people familiar to us than strangers. For a new rabbi to come into town with his disciples would have been more acceptable. But for the son of the carpenter to put on airs of knowing as much as a rabbi? Complete with his own disciples? They detested him for it.
They had heard about miracles Jesus had performed in other towns. They wanted him to perform a sign for them. Their attitude was that if he would perform a sign, then they would accept Him and His authority. Jesus “was amazed at their lack of faith” because they wanted proof in order to believe. They were uninterested in hearing His message.
After Jesus’ rebuke that “a prophet is not without honor except in his native place and among his own kin,” they refused to listen to Him at all. They refused to love Him or accept Him.
How often do we think we know someone? We form our opinions, right or wrong, and then we judge the person. We judge not by the truth, but by our own misconceptions and ideas. We refuse to love others if they don’t measure up to our expectations of what we think they should do or be.
Let’s try to be less demanding and judgmental of other people. Let’s try to accept them for who they are and not what we think they should be. Let’s have faith in our family and friends and accept them unconditionally, without making them prove they can do something for us first.
Loving Jesus, bless us with a true Christian spirit of love for others. Open our hearts to love and accept our family, friends and neighbors as they are. Help us especially not to judge others, so that we ourselves may not be judged.
Copyright 2014 Deborah Shelby