As we read today’s first reading from Joel, we may begin to feel as though it is Ash Wednesday. Fear not…it isn’t! But in this reading, the prophet reminds us that “near is the day of the Lord…for the day of the Lord is coming.” Never hurts to get a friendly reminder now, does it? In the Gospel reading from Luke 11, Jesus is accused of casting demons by the power of Beelzebul, the prince of demons.
Jesus’ response talks about how a house divided cannot stand. “Every kingdom divided against itself will be laid waste and house will fall against house.” Odd, isn’t it? Even devils must stick together. It just goes to show the importance of unity. This is true in all things, isn’t it? Companies, organizations, families, churches. When people stick together, there is greater strength, greater cohesion. But when they don’t…well, that’s another story.
Gossip, backbiting, rumormongering, dissension, discord. These are the things that divide a house. And unfortunately, we see these things even in the Church today. I suppose that there has always been such things in some measure. This is why we must always be wary. At the first sign of these things, we have to check ourselves and nip these things in the bud. We’ll all be much stronger if we stick together.