July 7, 2013: 14th Sunday in Ordinary Time
At that time the Lord appointed seventy-two others 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; I am sending you like lambs among wolves. Carry no money bag, no traveling bag, no sandals; and greet no one along the way. Into whatever house you enter, first say, ‘Peace to this household.’ If a peaceful people live 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 his 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.’ Whatever town you enter and they do not receive you, go out into the streets and say, ‘The dust of your town that clings to our feet, even that we shake off against you.’ ” (Luke 101-11)
Has anyone ever said to you, “I have an important message. Go to this special person and tell them exactly what I am telling you?” If you had a job like that, you would make sure you had the message right; then you would be sure to find the right person. Notice Jesus’ way is different. He doesn’t spell out the message. He doesn’t tell them exactly who to tell.
One of the basic things about Jesus is his way is different. He TRUSTS his disciples and he trusts us. The seventy-two he sends are advance scouts. He gives this direction: “It will be dangerous. They might not like the message. There is nothing in it for you.” He doesn’t promise a gold star or a badge or plaque with their names on it. Jesus even tells them not to be friendly to those they meet on the way. They are not to waste time explaining to people who don’t want to hear, just go on. Accept a meal or a place to sleep on the floor from anyone who will listen. That’s all they can expect. There is quite a contrast between the way of Jesus and our usual way of doing things.
Look back on yesterday. Did people count on you to do chores or homework, to follow instructions or to keep their confidence? Did you find these things hard to do? Did you make excuses? Would you do the same to Jesus? Talk to Jesus and LISTEN.