The Gospel according to Luke (13:31-35)
Some Pharisees came to Jesus and said, “Go away, leave this area because Herod wants to kill you.” He replied, “Go and tell that fox, ‘Behold, I cast out demons and I perform healings today and tomorrow, and on the third day I accomplish my purpose. Yet I must continue on my way today, tomorrow, and the following day, for it is impossible that a prophet should die outside of Jerusalem.’ “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how many times I yearned to gather your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, but you were unwilling! Behold, your house will be abandoned. But I tell you, you will not see me until the time comes when you say, Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.”
Have you ever gotten an idea or been inspired by an experience in such a way that you became single minded in your pursuit of your desire or dream. This happened to me when I became enamored with wife Ana back when we were in college. What started as attraction and admiration quickly became much more. It did not take long until I knew I wanted to spend the rest of my life with her. Everything I did from that moment on was either directly or indirectly affected my single-minded purpose to make that a reality.
In today’s Gospel when Jesus was asked to leave the area, in a sense he was being asked to abandon His mission. Yet he remains steadfast and determined to follow His father’s will all the way to its conclusion. And along the way he is also determined to establish the kingdom of heaven on earth through his ministry of healing, teaching, and forgiveness. He also calls to mind our tendency to reject his message whether it be from the ancient prophets or anyone who threatens our perceived peace and way of life.
Jesus is determined, single-minded in his desire to fulfill his mission of salvation by reaching Jerusalem. And even though he knows suffering and death await him there, he also knows he will bring salvation through his resurrection. God loves each and everyone of us so much he sent His only son to destroy sin and death. It is because of the persistence, dedication, and obedience of Jesus that we can say, Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.
Action of the Day:
All of us, from time-to-time struggle with listening to modern day prophets who proclaim the truth in word and deed. God gave us an intellect and blessed us with a desire for relationship. Use the gifts he has given you, along with his generous grace to continue our pilgrimage to Jerusalem. Today or in the days to come look for opportunities to be courageous when others resist or reject your attempts to share the Good News that the Kingdom of God is at hand.