September 26: Twenty-Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Posted by Campus Ministry on Friday, September 24, 2021 at 5:02 PM PDT
During this season of Ordinary Time, we continue to take a deep dive into the realities of discipleship.
This week’s teachings invite us to expand our imaginations and take a good look at our hearts. We can do so knowing that God loves us deeply and without abandon.
In today’s Gospel, we first hear the panicked reactions of the disciples, scandalized by people, other than themselves, acting in the name of God. I imagine the disciples are caught off guard when Jesus welcomes the work of these so-called outsiders and recognizes the Spirit of God in them when the disciples do not. We hear a similar exchange in the first reading between Joshua and Moses. I imagine Moses saying in response to Joshua’s concerns, “Awesome! The more, the merrier, to have God’s prophets working with us!”
God shows up in ways we don’t plan for and works beyond our imaginations. Where in our communities can we recognize the Holy Spirit working in seemingly unexpected ways, perhaps through the most unlikely of prophetic voices, trying to grow love and goodness in this world? Do you hear the Spirit among our own Church, calling for healing and reconciliation? Do you see her in our communities organizing around refugees, racial justice, and care of our planet? Can you feel the Spirit in the LGBTQIA+ community? Can we stand in awe of how the Holy Spirit moves in this world in ways we’ve not expected, to bring about peace and justice?
The second teaching in today’s Gospel is quite gruesome, but I think it gets Jesus’ point across pretty well. Jesus tells us to “cut it off” i.e to look within our own selves and let go of anything that draws our hearts away from living with faith, hope, and love. This world needs people to live wholeheartedly for God’s dreams. It needs all of us to be vessels of God’s love and grace in this world. Where do you need God’s grace to continue living as the disciple God calls you to be?