3/13/2023 (Monday) Today’s gospel reading: Luke 4:24-30
24 Jesus said to the people in the synagogue at Nazareth: “Amen, I say to you, no prophet is accepted in his own native place.
25 Indeed, I tell you, there were many widows in Israel in the days of Elijah
when the sky was closed for three and a half years and a severe famine spread over the entire land.
26 It was to none of these that Elijah was sent, but only to a widow in Zarephath in the land of Sidon.
27 Again, there were many lepers in Israel during the time of Elisha the prophet; yet not one of them was cleansed, but only Naaman the Syrian.”
28 When the people in the synagogue heard this, they were all filled with fury.
29 They rose up, drove him out of the town, and led him to the brow of the hill on which their town had been built, to hurl him down headlong.
30 But he passed through the midst of them and went away.
3/13/2023 (Monday) Today’s gospel reflection: Luke 4:24-30
The gospel reading above follows the passage where Jesus had proclaimed His mission in Nazareth by reading the scroll of the prophet Isaiah. Then He claimed that it has already been fulfilled in their midst. All those who heard Him were amazed. Then He went on to say what’s on their mind: that He is going perhaps to show them how the acceptable year of favor will indeed happen to them and that they will witness some spectacular miracles.
Yet Jesus also knew their disbelief and the truth of His non-acceptance by His own people. How could they accept a familiar neighbor to do miracles?
Jesus is familiar with his own people and at the same time, His townspeople knew Him too. As the Son of God, He was aware of the disbelief and hardness of heart of His own tribe. Yet he did not mind the familiarity of His people nor their hostility to hinder Him from doing His mission. He had the courage to do what He needs to do, even if it means antagonizing a lot of people.
The people tried to push Jesus to the precipice but it did not happen. For indeed nothing ever happens without the permission of God and if it is not yet time. Evil plans of people can never be successful. God is good all the time.
Yet the goodness of God is often lost to many people. This happens when familiarity leads to rejection or disbelief. Just like the people of Nazareth, some of us cannot easily accept an ordinary neighbor to become a messenger of the truth. We like to see miraculous healings but faith? How can we believe in a carpenter’s son?
Let us ask Jesus to help us develop trust in Him. Let us pray for our faith to grow and dispel our unbelief even in difficult times.