July 8, 2016
by Mike Kavan
Creighton University's School of Medicine
click here for photo and information about the writer

Friday of the Fourteenth Week in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 387

Hosea 14:2-10
Psalm 51:3-4, 8-9, 12-13, 14 and 17
Matthew 10:16-23
Praying Ordinary Time

Weekly Guide for Daily Prayer

As I reflect on today’s Gospel, I have tried to put myself in the shoes of Jesus’ apostles. Here I am, listening to instructions from Jesus and he is telling us to go out and spread the word of God, but, by the way, you are going to be like sheep amongst wolves, you will be handed over to courts for what you say and do and be scourged, you will be hated, you will flee from town to town, and..…YIKES!

I have to be thinking that the Apostles are asking, “Did I really sign up for this?”  Unfortunately, I think I would have backed down and said thanks, but no thanks. Amazingly and thankfully, the Apostles did not. Their connection with Jesus was so strong. So compelling was the message that they not only did not back down, but they went out with a fervor that influences us today.

As I reflect on what this means to me, I first thank the Apostles for having the courage to deliver the message since it provides true hope and purpose. I also do my best to tap into the Holy Spirit and to be strong when confronted with situations where it would be far easier to give in and sin. As with the Apostles, Jesus sends us out as well. Now, it may not be to governors of the Roman Empire, but he does want us to live God’s message through our interactions with family members, co-workers, friends, and others. And although this may, at times, cause internal and external conflict, it is through our faith, words, and actions that we breathe life into the words of Jesus and prepare ourselves to endure, to celebrate, and to be saved not only temporally, but eternally.

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