The Gospel according to Luke (10:1-9)
The Lord Jesus appointed seventy-two disciples
whom he sent ahead of him in pairs
to every town and place he intended to visit.
He said to them,
“The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few;
so ask the master of the harvest
to send out laborers for his harvest.
Go on your way;
behold, I am sending you like lambs among wolves.
Carry no money bag, no sack, no sandals;
and greet no one along the way.
Into whatever house you enter,
first say, ‘Peace to this household.’
If a peaceful person lives there,
your peace will rest on him;
but if not, it will return to you.
Stay in the same house and eat and drink what is offered to you,
for the laborer deserves payment.
Do not move about from one house to another.
Whatever town you enter and they welcome you,
eat what is set before you,
cure the sick in it and say to them,
‘The Kingdom of God is at hand for you.’”
This Gospel, specifically for today, the Feast of St Luke the Evangelist and author of the third Gospel and the Acts of the Apostles, is one that is near and dear to my heart, as it was proclaimed at our ordination to the Diaconate a little more than three years ago. The most vivid memory it brings to mind was of how my brothers and I were prostrate on the floor of the Cathedral, while all present prayed for us as we were ordained. It was an amazing experience. The other part of my thought around this Gospel concerns how what Jesus said to the seventy-two applies to all of us who are followers of Jesus – we are all sent as “lambs among wolves” to proclaim the Good News that “the Kingdom of God is at hand for you.”
We are “lambs among wolves” because living as Jesus’ followers means caring for others, especially those on the margins, at least as much as we do ourselves, and that is not going to be a popular view in today’s materialistic world. We are told to get all we can and to “take care of number one”. Jesus, on the other hand, tells us to love and care for others, and to give from our own excess to help those who lack. It’s a very important directive from Jesus.
And, the other part is of how we are to proclaim that “the Kingdom of God is at hand”, and we do that by sharing Jesus’ peace wherever we go. It can be very hard to be a person of peace when there is so little peace in the world, it seems. But, Jesus is the source of ALL peace. His Holy Spirit is the source of all peace. All we need to do is to stay connected to that source, and take time to regroup in His presence when we lose track of that peace.
May we go forth and do our best to share that peace and that love with everyone we meet. Then, like Luke, we can be witnesses of the love of God and of the promise of His kingdom. May we reach out in love and care to all we meet and help them to come to know the same God who loves us and calls us here today.
Action for the Day:
Today, be an instrument of peace. Ask our Lord to show you how to extend His peace to someone you meet today.
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