A Prophet’s Pain

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In both of our readings today, we see and hear that prophets get “dissed.” In Jeremiah 26, our first reading, we see Jeremiah saying everything that God tells him to say. The people’s response? “You must be put to death!” Gee, that’ll make you want to open your mouth next time, won’t it? Then in the Gospel reading, the people from Jesus’ native place brush him off, because they “know” him.

Jesus says, “A prophet is not without honor except in his native place and in his own house.” Why is that? I’m sure you’ve heard the old axiom “Familiarity breeds comtempt.” Perhaps that saying is something of a definition of these words of Jesus. The people knew where he was from, knew his family. How could he possibly be anyone special?

Perhaps you’ve had a similar experience in your own family or parish or town. How could you be anyone special, they ask. I know some of the things that they’ve done! Don’t play “holy” with me, pal! Or perhaps you’ve thought that way about someone. You know them all too well. God couldn’t possibly be speaking through THEM, could he? Or could he?

Father, help to see everyone as special; to be open to the possibility that anyone could be your messenger…even if we know all about them. Amen.

Today’s Readings


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