Jesus said, “If any of you put a stumbling block before one of these little ones who believe in me, it would be better for you if a great millstone were hung around your neck and you were thrown into the sea. If your hand causes you to stumble, cut it off; it is better for you to enter life maimed than to have two hands and to go to hell, to the unquenchable fire. And if your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off; it is better for you to enter life lame than to have two feet and to be thrown into hell. And if your eye causes you to stumble, tear it out; it is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than to have two eyes and to be thrown into hell, where their worm never dies, and the fire is never quenched.
“For everyone will be salted with fire. Salt is good; but if salt has lost its saltiness, how can you season it? Have salt in yourselves, and be at peace with one another.” Mark 9:42-50
There are times when trying to really understand life and our steps ahead are completely hidden. Ritual and regularity have lost their power. We find ourselves hopeful for the future but confused by where we might be going. No clear signs and no clear words can direct us. The only thing we can do is wait and pray. Like putting glazed pots in a kiln, we can do our best, and hope that the fire helps our creations become vessels of beauty. We offer what we have.
Jesus is warning the disciples about dismissing the vulnerable and the outcasts. How we treat them and these days when our directions might seem unclear, are most important. Our mean times are to be are times of great kindness and compassion, times when we give ourselves away, so that we can be remade, remolded and fired up for God's world.
Today I ask for strength to be sacrificial and loving in these mean and waiting times. May we love with reckless abandon despite our fears and anxieties, knowing God will make every one of us new.