Tuesday, January 20, 2015

A House Divided

Then Jesus went home; and the crowd came together again, so that they could not even eat. When his family heard it, they went out to restrain him, for people were saying, "He has gone out of his mind." And the scribes who came down from Jerusalem said, "He has Beelzebul, and by the ruler of the demons he casts out demons." And he called them to him, and spoke to them in parables, "How can Satan cast out Satan? If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. And if a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand. And if Satan has risen up against himself and is divided, he cannot stand, but his end has come. But no one can enter a strong man's house and plunder his property without first tying up the strong man; then indeed the house can be plundered.
"Truly I tell you, people will be forgiven for their sins and whatever blasphemies they utter; but whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit can never have forgiveness, but is guilty of an eternal sin"—for they had said, "He has an unclean spirit." Then his mother and his brothers came; and standing outside, they sent to him and called him. A crowd was sitting around him; and they said to him, "Your mother and your brothers and sisters are outside, asking for you." And he replied, "Who are my mother and my brothers?" And looking at those who sat around him, he said, "Here are my mother and my brothers! Whoever does the will of God is my brother and sister and mother." Mark 3:19b-35 

As parents of three children, we have often been asked, by our daughters, of course, who is our favorite. The answer always comes back, from both of us, that we love them equally. And yet the desire, to be the best, to stand out beyond the others, and to divide the flock is a constant in life in a household. But as parents, we know the truth. We do love them each completely and together we are more than divided into our individual gifts and tendencies.

In our Gospel today, Jesus is being pulled in many directions both by the religious leaders and his family. He stood fast with their pulling and told them that a house divided cannot stand. We are stronger together, and if we want to be the family of God, we will love the work of being a people together. We always want to be chosen as the favorite, or have God chose our team, but we are invited today to work at being a family together in love and service.

Today I ask God to help me work at bringing people together in God's love. May we be dedicated to the justice and compassion of God, welcoming all to the family of God. May we make room for all who would be our siblings, and trust that God will hold us all together.

No comments: