Daily Reflection
September 30th, 2004
Sue Crawford
Department of Political Science and International Studies
Click here for a photo of and information on this writer.

Memorial of Saint Jerome, priest and doctor of the Church
Job 19:21-27
Psalm 27:7-8a, 8b-9abc, 13-14
Luke 10:1-12

“Be ready at all times to answer anyone who asks you to explain the hope you have in you, but do it with gentleness and respect.” 1 Peter 3:15b-16

The gospel story for today tells of Jesus sending out his followers to offer peace, to heal the sick, and to tell others that the “kingdom of God is at hand for you.”  Near the end of the gospels we hear Jesus commissioning all of us to go out to spread the good news of reconciliation and to make disciples of all peoples.  We’re called to continue the work of those sent out in today’s gospel.

The readings for today provide evangelism lessons that may help us to renew our commitment to our commission.  All three readings emphasize the importance of offering a witness of hope.  Consider the witness of Job to his “friends” in the first reading.  Amidst horrific life conditions Job not only holds onto his hope, he tells those who have come to visit of his confidence and hope in God. Some of us can recall times when we have seen the power of a witness of hope in the midst of tragedy.  I recall the powerful witness of Tom and Mary Kay at the funeral of their son.  The hope of Jesus was so apparent through their actions and words at that difficult time that many were touched and commented to one another about how that witness encouraged them.

The Psalm puts words to a foundational hope for many of us ­ that we will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.   A relationship with Jesus and a Christian community opens our eyes to hope and healing that is available here and now.  This hope makes a positive difference in our lives.  Jesus sends out followers to heal and teach with specific instructions.  The instruction from Peter, which is not in today’s reading, offers specific evangelical instructions that I find useful and challenging.  It calls us to always be ready to answer anyone who asks us to explain the hope that we have.  To be ready for this task requires that we spend time reflecting on our hope and the difference it makes in our lives.  We can then be more prepared when we hear questions like:  How can you be so cheery on a Monday?  How did you ever make it through tenure?  How did you ever make it with three teenagers in the house?

Lord, We thank you that you allow us to see your goodness in the land of the living. Open our eyes to the difference that you make in our lives.  Open our hearts and eyes to see those around us who are searching for hope.  Open our hearts and mouths to share our message of hope with gentleness.

Click on the link below to send an e-mail response
to the writer of this reflection.

Let Your Friends Know About This Reflection By Sending Them An E-mail


Collaborative Ministry Office Guestbook