Today’s Gospel offers us an invitation and a challenge.
Jesus called the twelve and began to send them out two by two, and gave them authority over the unclean spirits. He ordered them to take nothing for their journey except a staff; no bread, no bag, no money in their belts; but to wear sandals and not to put on two tunics. He said to them, ‘Wherever you enter a house, stay there until you leave the place. If any place will not welcome you and they refuse to hear you, as you leave, shake off the dust that is on your feet as a testimony against them.’ So they went out and proclaimed that all should repent. They cast out many demons, and anointed with oil many who were sick and cured them.
The invitation is to be open to following God’s call — wherever and however it may take us.
The challenge is to be open to following God’s call — wherever and however it may take us. In many ways we welcome the invitation to follow God, we are committed to living the Gospel of Jesus. And sometimes, that call is not as pretty as the calligraphied holy card tucked in our Bible. Why it’s absurd to go traveling without money or food. Surely Jesus didn’t mean to leave my mobile phone behind or my credit card. Besides it was a different time back then. Jesus would not have asked that of us today.
When we open ourselves to God’s call, we cannot know for certain where or how it will lead. We can certainly use our gifts of common sense and reason, but openness to God also means using our gifts of passion, boldness, kindness, daring, and risk. How can we know “for sure”? That’s where having a regular habit of prayer is helpful because then we’ve already opened our line to God and have been in the habit of listening and sharing with God. Invitations to do the Gospel may still come as a surprise but with a habit of prayerfulness, we’ve already got some ballast in the boat.
How does this Scripture passage strike you this day? Please share your comments below. We’d love to hear from you.