September 26, 2016
He said to them, “Take nothing for the journey, neither walking stick, nor sack, nor food, nor money, and let no one take a second tunic. Whatever house you enter, stay there and leave from there. And as for those who do not welcome you, when you leave that town,
shake the dust from your feet in testimony against them.” (Luke 9:1-6)
After the rejection in Nazareth by his own people, Jesus went to other places to preach. Today we read how he sent out his closest friends, the Twelve, with special instructions and powers. Like Jesus, the apostles were to go out preaching and teaching the Good News. Jesus gave them detailed instructions as to what to carry and how long to stay in any given place.
These were indications for the early Christians of the need to move quickly and urgently. We find a strong connection between these instructions and the ones given by God to the Israelites before they fled Egypt. The notion of traveling light, or to “take nothing for the journey,” rather than being a burden makes the traveling easier. There is no need to carry heavy things; trust in God is enough.
At this time of persecution and rejection by both Jews and Romans, this Gospel encourages to always trust in God’s care.
Today’s reading offers three significant messages:
• The disciples should not place their trust in “what” they bring to the mission, but rather on “who” they proclaim.
• There is urgency in the proclamation of the Good News. Do not try to convince the reluctant. The mission is pressing, so the evangelizers must keep moving.
• Jesus and his followers lived on the margins of society, always on the edge of rejection.
For personal reflection:
1. Do I welcome into my life the people who live in the margins of today’s society? Do they walk away from me “shaking the dust off their feet” because I do not welcome them?
2. Am I putting all my trust in the “baggage” that I have collected throughout my life instead of traveling light trusting in God?