Daily Office Readings for Monday of Week One of Advent: Year 1
Morning, Psalms 1, 2, 3; Evening, Psalms 4 and 7;
Isaiah 1:10 to 20; 1st Thessalonians 1:1 to10; Luke 20:1 to 8
“But if we say, “Of human origin”, all the people will stone us; for they are convinced that John was a prophet.” (Luke 20: 6)
The recognized leaders of the faith, are not sticking to their own professed faith. If we believe in something, anything, we ought to hold on to it as the very core of our existence; at least until we learn better. They are missing such an opportunity.
I don’t know how, but we are able to hear the inmost thoughts of what was going on within the circle of chief priests, elders and scribes. These leaders are afraid of the very people whom they are in charge of leading. What an opportunity to model correct learning. If they think the people believe that John the Baptist is a prophet, then perhaps they too (chief priests, elders and scribes) ought to submit to the gifts of the Baptist. Sometimes, but not often, the common people are a better judge of who’s who than those educated to be such.
There are times that we should not be influenced by the mob. However, we should conduct a little informal test as a way to see if God is acting in our midst. Our Biblical history informs us that when God invites us to do the Lord’s work it often requires sacrifice, will costs us some of our money, our time, and will be out of our comfort zone. But just as much, it will be something that benefits the community without bringing praise or accolades to ourselves. Our God is all about the communion in which we live. The chief priests, elders and scribes seem to be about themselves at the expense of the community that they are suppose to spiritually lead.
Each one of us should look around and see who in our midst seems to be doing the Lord’s good work for the benefit of our community. Who is teaching people to read, taking meals to those who are hungry, donating to those in need, and so forth? They may not be the ordained or political office holders. Like John the Baptist, they may be people who live on the fringes themselves. But their ministry is of the Lord’s calling whether we want to admit it or not. Such are the saints of God. Don’t you want to be one too?
Please keep up your thoughts and prayers and hopes for Ukraine and Iran.
As we listen to what the Spirit is saying to us, let us live to love, and to serve, and to teach others to love and serve, while pondering anew what the Almighty can do. John