Monday, October 28, 2013

More Spirits

“When the unclean spirit has gone out of a person, it passes through waterless places seeking rest, but finds none. Then it says, ‘I will return to my house from which I came.’ And when it comes, it finds the house empty, swept, and put in order. Then it goes and brings with it seven other spirits more evil than itself, and they enter and dwell there, and the last state of that person is worse than the first. So also will it be with this evil generation.”

While he was still speaking to the people, behold, his mother and his brothers stood outside, asking to speak to him. But he replied to the man who told him, “Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?” And stretching out his hand toward his disciples, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers! For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.”
Matthew 12:43-50

It's that time of year. The last weeks of October and all the focus is on spirits, spooky things and delightfully gross and scary stuff. Halloween and All Saints' Day give us permission to talk about spirits and those who have gone before. We talk about the things that scare us and are inundated with horror movies on TV. Most of it is all in good fun. The hidden part of our humanity is the fear of evil, the anxiety of evil overcoming good, our lives destroyed by hate and fear.

Jesus has been instructing the people how to live the life of faith. He also warns them of how easy it can be for us to let evil slide back into our lives. Our selfishness and greed can compound easily and can cut off compassion and forgiveness. We are invited to be the family of God, brothers and sisters of Christ, by living lives filled with God's love.

I ask God to help me today live a life of love and compassion. May nothing we encounter today distract us from living lives worthy of the family of God. May we humbly offer ourselves in the service of others, honoring all those who have come before us by continuing their self-sacrifice and faithfulness today.

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