The rejection of Jesus by those in his hometown did not slow down his mission. We can imagine that Jesus knew what he was going to do already, but en route wanted to stop by to see if any from his “native land” would like to participate in his public outreach. Apparently, no one did, so without missing a beat, Jesus went ahead and, “summoned the Twelve and began to send them out two by two and gave them authority over unclean spirits” (Mk 6:7). Jesus summons us and sends us out as well.
At the end of each Mass, we are sent, just as the Apostles, to proclaim the Good News! All of us as the Body of Christ, believers in Jesus the Christ, the baptized, are to live as his disciples and bear witness to how Jesus has transformed our lives. This is best done by acknowledging that God is the center of our lives and recognizing, empowering, and standing up for the dignity of each person that we have been given the grace to encounter. This is to be foundational in the way we think, speak about, speak to and act toward one another. Our call of evangelization is also unique, for each one of us has a particular charism and gift that the Holy Spirit provides.
Jesus is the one who calls, sends, and empowers us for mission. We are sanctified, made holy, when we say yes to his will, participate in the sacramental life and in his life of service. Jesus not only teaches with authority, but he also calls and sends us with that same authority. We are to rely on the divine providence of our Father, meaning he will prepare us and provide that which we need to accomplish the task he has given us, and he will also send the Holy Spirit and others to provide help, aid, guidance, and support. We see this over and over again in the lives of the saints.
At first sight, we may not agree with God’s choosing, his choosing us, or the others he sends to help us! Yet, we only need to recall what he accomplished with the Apostles, remembering the simple beginnings they came from and the wonders they accomplished in Jesus’ name. We also need to remember that God does not see as we do, for we are often misled by appearances “or lofty stature” but God sees into the depths of the heart. He sees the character and potential of each of us (cf 1 Samuel 16:7).
Let us be about building up the reign of God, be willing to be empowered by Jesus and those he brings into our lives, as well as be willing to empower, encourage, and support others. May we pray and be open to what God is calling us to do to serve him, to be willing to encounter others and will their good without seeking anything in return.
Photo: Two Crusaders, young men of integrity, preparing to be sent two years ago!