The Passover of the Jews was near, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. In the temple he found people selling cattle, sheep, and doves, and the money changers seated at their tables. Making a whip of cords, he drove all of them out of the temple, both the sheep and the cattle. He also poured out the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables. He told those who were selling the doves, “Take these things out of here! Stop making my Father’s house a marketplace!” His disciples remembered that it was written, “Zeal for your house will consume me.” The Jews then said to him, “What sign can you show us for doing this?” Jesus answered them, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” The Jews then said, “This temple has been under construction for forty-six years, and will you raise it up in three days?” But he was speaking of the temple of his body. After he was raised from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this; and they believed the scripture and the word that Jesus had spoken. John 2:13-22
Sometimes we get too comfortable with our practices and behaviors that we cannot see the damage we are doing. We get too comfortable in our comforts, our culture and the ways to which we have grown accustomed. We don't see the damage it does to ourselves our to the children, let alone to those in great need. We worry to much about looks and not nearly enough on honesty and heart, on looking our best instead of doing our best.
Jesus enters the temple and is nauseated by the commerce. People were being taken advantage of, and told their offerings and coins were not good enough in the temple. They needed to buy better and more expensive offerings and change their money for a loss. We are invited to do some housecleaning of our own. We are invited in this season to examine our hearts and the barriers we set up for others. We are called to get out of the way and welcome God's people to the table without cost or requirements.
Today, I ask God to give me the strength to do the hard work of self-examination. May we look inward and around us, taking down the walls we have built and making a place for all people who are all of the beloved of God.