for Sunday, July 5, 2015
One of the aspects of a prophet is this inward sense: I don't want to do
it! So often we see the prophets of the Jewish Scriptures telling us: I
did not want to speak to the people, I did not want to say harsh things, I
did not want to be the one who said these things! This inward sense is
important because it helps us identify a true prophet. There are lots of
people who say bad things, who tell us what is right and what is wrong. We
have to be cautious of those who like to be prophets!! To be a prophet of
the true God is not a vocation that one chooses for oneself. It is always
a vocation, we can say this, imposed by God on a person. Our first reading
today, from the Prophet Ezequiel, speaks to this imposed vocation.
The second reading, from the Second Letter to the Corinthians, reminds us
prophets and all Christians give their best witness when they are aware of
their own poverty and their weaknesses. Evangelization is about drawing
others to Christ, attracting others to the Lord because of the goodness of
the Lord. Paul could be a fearless preacher but was always aware of his
own past and of his present weakness. This is a man who had Christians put
to death and now preaches Jesus Christ.
The Gospel today is from Saint Mark and shows that even the people with
whom Jesus had lived for so many years could not accept Him. They saw Him
as simply an ordinary Jewish man. They could see and hear that He had
received extraordinary gifts of wisdom and that He could work miraclesóbut
that hardly dented their rejection of Him as simply an ordinary person.
They could not accept God dwelling in Jesus. Again, the prophet is
rejected, the extraordinary work of God is rejected.
Part of what we can learn today is that what is divine and extraordinary
and wonderful is often hidden in the ordinary of human existence. We are
invited to seek the Lord Jesus in the poor and the weak and the rejected.
Readings of the day:
First Reading: Ezekiel 2.2-5
Second Reading: 2 Corinthians 12.7-10
Gospel: Mark 6.1-6
Reflections are available for the following Sundays: