FIFTEENTH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME YEAR B – 11/7/2021
Our Lord Commands The Disciples To Travel Light
1st Reading: Amos 7:12-15: ‘Go, shepherd, and prophesy to my people Israel’
Resp. Psalm: 84(85): 9-15: Let us see O Lord your mercy and give us your saving help.
2nd Reading: Ephesians 1:3-14: God chose us in Christ before the world was made.
Gospel: Mark 6:7-13: Take nothing with you.
1. When you go on a trip away from home, do you travel light? Some have the ability to make even major journeys with a small piece of luggage, but many of us find ourselves slightly embarrassed when checking in at the airport, or standing on the platform at the bus stop. We can hardly carry the huge suitcases or juggle the collection of bags we are taking. Very often, when we look at the large pile of clothes we did not wear and spare objects we never used or needed and resolve to do better next time. But do we?
2. In the today’s gospel, Our Lord commands the disciples to travel light as they set out to preach: He instructed them to take nothing for the journey except a staff-no bread, no haversack, no cappers for their purses. They were to wear sandals but, He added, Do not take a spare tunic.’ Why these minimalist instructions? Our Lord is expecting the recipients of the message to show generosity in feeding and accommodating the disciples. He is teaching the disciples that in their work depend totally on God for everything. God will look after their physical requirements just as he will meet their spiritual needs. They should not spend their time or effort on worrying about material things but be totally available.
3. The very simple instance of traveling with too much material luggage can help us to grasp Our Lord’s spiritual message. If we are going to stay with friends, they will be able to help us with anything we have forgotten to take. Most hotels will do the same. Nowadays, there are few places in the world where we cannot buy what we need that we have forgotten. We really do not need to worry unduly if our packing list is incomplete. In the spiritual realm, then, will God not supply all the graces we need to live our lives and cross whatever bridges Gad asks us to cross on our journey through life? Surely, He will do what He says He will do!
4. Saint Paul saw himself and us as the recipients of God’s enormous bounty. The second reading is a hymn of praise for the blessings which flow from God’s generous love. “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ who has blessed us with all the spiritual blessings in heaven in Christ. “ The Apostle goes on to reflect on how the greatest gift of all is have been by chosen by God. God has picked us out , showered us with the resources that we nee, given us the wisdom and insight to fulfill our vocation.
Read More: Feast Of St Thomas The Apostle – 3/7/2021https://agnesisika.com/feast-of-st-thomas-the-apostle-3-7-2021/
5. Prophet Amos is a case in point as we heard in today’s first reading, the priests at Bethel tried to repel Amos from preaching in the sanctuary. Amos replies with quiet confidence “it was the Lord who took me from herding the flock, and the Lord said,”Go, prophesy to my people Israel.” With his vocation comes the power to fulfill it, the wisdom to speak to speak of God, the courage to challenge the establishment, the determination to persevere. Amos has found from his own experience that God alone is enough. The disciples are being trained in the same spiritual school to depend on the promise of Our Lord, to trust in the generosity of God, to believe that God will provide all that they need.
6. The Catechism of the Catholic Church reaches us that, “All Christ’s faithful are to direct their affections rightly, lest they be hindered in their pursuit of perfect charity by the use of worldly things and by an adherence to riches which is contrary to the spirit of evangelical poverty-2545. The Church reminds us therefore that, In order to practice true charity, we must use them for God’s glory otherwise they become more barriers to salvation. In the Spirit of Christ, if we depend on physical possession or any other kind of mental luggage like a high opinion of our good looks, or reliance on our own talents , then our ears become deafen to God’s call and our hearts hardened against it.
7. If we always start from the fact that what we have are blessings from God then we will not go astray from the life Christ intends for us. He will give us the courage to do without things that we normally rely and help us to use God’s gifts which he has showered upon us for His kingdom. In the meantime, let us enjoy them as generous gifts from the Father in heaven, when the need arises we will be able to travel light whether one God’s mission in this world, or on one way journey to the next.
Have a wonderful Sunday!