September 27, 2015: Twenty-sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time
At that time, John said to Jesus, “Teacher, we saw someone driving out demons in your name, and we tried to prevent him because he does not follow us.”
Jesus replied, “Do not prevent him.
There is no one who performs a mighty deed in my name who can at the same time speak ill of me. For whoever is not against us is for us. Anyone who gives you a cup of water to drink because you belong to Christ, amen, I say to you, will surely not lose his reward.
“Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him if a great millstone were put around his neck and he were thrown into the sea. If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter into life maimed than with two hands to go into Gehenna, into the unquenchable fire.
And if your foot causes you to sin, cut if off. It is better for you to enter into life crippled than with two feet to be thrown into Gehenna.
And if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out. Better for you to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye than with two eyes to be thrown into Gehenna, where ‘their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched.'” (Mark 9:38-43, 45, 47-48)
Jesus has more to teach his disciples in this Sunday’s gospel. Today we see how he wants to show the disciples how BIG God’s love is. Jesus knows God is an all-loving God. Those who show that love to one another through service like “giving someone a drink of water in the name of Christ” are in God’s family.
At the same time Jesus has some serious words for those who lead others away from that love. Jesus has special love and care for children and he warns his followers not to be a bad example for his “little ones.” Let the deeds we do with our hands, like helping with the dishes or caring for our little brothers or sisters, and with our feet, like playing fairly with others and carrying someone else’s load, be a sign that we too want to be a good example of Jesus’ love for all.
This week let’s be aware of the things we do (or don’t do) for others. How are our hands serving God? Our feet? How especially do our lips and our words show that we live in God’s love? By our words and our actions let’s include others and help them know God’s love.
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