Today’s Gospel: Mark 8:14-21
In today’s Gospel reading, Jesus talks about the yeast of the Pharisees and Herod. The disciples think he is simply referring to the bread that they forgot to bring with them, but silly them, Jesus is never just speaking simply! If we think about what yeast does to our bread, it makes it rise and increase in size over time. The bread becomes large enough to feed many after it is baked. Both the Pharisees and Herod lead the people with their laws and principles, which are largely counter to the Kingdom of God. Jesus is pointing out to the disciples that what Herod and the Pharisees spread hardens the heart and blinds them from the truth, which is what Jesus teaches. Jesus, through His teachings and works of mercy spread throughout the crowds and into baskets to spare, not so with Herod and the Pharisees!
As a mom of grown children, it is very difficult to see these young adults making choices that are not in their best interest. As independent individuals, they are making choices in a culture that does not share the same values as our family’s. But like Jesus in today’s Gospel, asking questions and bringing to light the consequences of these choices is all we can do. Questions to help them see where they went wrong and better understand what they were taught growing up in our family. Bad choices, like the yeast of Herod and the Pharisees, can rise into larger problems and have long-term results. But with God’s grace, they can turn around and see their bad choices, begin making better ones. These young people can begin leaning on Jesus’ word and have an abundance of graces to overcome the bad.
What do you listen to during the day, and what do you watch? There is a favorite saying that I used a great deal when raising our children: Junk in=junk out. What we listen to and watch can very well become our guidepost to moral decisions. What is on your playlist today?
Dear Jesus, through the Holy Spirit, grant me the gift of understanding when listening to the ways of the world. Amen.
Copyright 2018 Elizabeth Weidner
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