Has anyone ever told you that you’re crazy or out of your mind? You are in good company. Today’s gospel is two very short lines. In the second line, Jesus’ family said of him, “He is out of his mind.” Mk 3:21
During the three short years of ministry, Jesus was viewed as radical and unconventional. He performed miracles, healed on the Sabbath, forgave sins and taught about the Father’s unconditional love for all.
Jesus gave us the beatitudes which were quite controversial in his time (and still are today). I once read that we are to consider the beatitudes as the moral rules fleshed out for adults, while the 10 commandments are for our early foundation (formation as kids). The beatitudes are controversial in the way they challenge us to think about and view or experience our universal human conditions. I came across a beautifully concise summary by Deacon Douglas McManaman that breaks the beatitudes down in ways I’ve not pondered before and challenges me in new ways.
The Gospel acclamation charges us to ask God to “open our hearts, to listen to the words of (your) son.”Act 16:14 Our hearts (ears and minds) have to be open to hearing the words that the Father gave Jesus, so we too, can be good and faithful servants. How on earth are we going to do that? We have to be intentional with our actions and thoughts. We do have a silent assistant; we were given the Holy Spirit to help guide us on the Way.
“For this reason, I remind you to stir into flame the gift of God that you have through the imposition of my hands. For God did not give us a spirit of cowardice but rather of power and love and self-control. So do not be ashamed of your testimony to our Lord,” 2Tm1: 6-7
Each and every one of us has been created with unique gifts to be shared with others for the glory of God our Father. You are not out of your mind if you stand up to a bully. You are not crazy if you give food to someone who has none. Helping to build water purifiers so people can have clean water to drink is being mindful. You are not crazy when you speak up about the sanctity of life. When you ask folks to come together to solve problems in spite of differing opinions of how things ‘should be done’, you are part of a solution.
Please pray with me. Spirit of wisdom and understanding, enlighten our minds to perceive the mysteries of the universe in relation to eternity. Spirit of right judgment and courage, guide us and make us firm in our baptismal decision to follow Jesus’ way of love. Spirit of knowledge and reverence, help us to see the lasting value of justice and mercy in our everyday dealings with one another. May we respect life as we work to solve the problems of family and nation, economy and ecology. Spirit of God, spark our faith, hope, and love into new action each day. Fill our lives with wonder and awe in your presence which penetrates all creation. Amen.
Beth is part of the customer service team at Diocesan. She brings a unique depth of experience to the team from her time spent in parish ministries, sales and the service industry over the last 25 yrs. She is a practicing spiritual director as well as a Secular Franciscan (OFS). Beth is quick to offer a laugh, a prayer or smile to all she comes in contact with. Reach her here email@example.com.