Then Amaziah, the priest of Bethel, sent to King Jeroboam of Israel, saying, “Amos has conspired against you in the very center of the house of Israel; the land is not able to bear all his words. For thus Amos has said, ‘Jeroboam shall die by the sword, and Israel must go into exile away from his land.’” And Amaziah said to Amos, “O seer, go, flee away to the land of Judah, earn your bread there, and prophesy there; but never again prophesy at Bethel, for it is the king’s sanctuary, and it is a temple of the kingdom.”
Then Amos answered Amaziah, “I am no prophet, nor a prophet’s son; but I am a herdsman, and a dresser of sycamore trees,and the Lord took me from following the flock, and the Lord said to me, ‘Go, prophesy to my people Israel.’
“Now therefore hear the word of the Lord. You say, ‘Do not prophesy against Israel, and do not preach against the house of Isaac.” Therefore thus says the Lord: ‘Your wife shall become a prostitute in the city, and your sons and your daughters shall fall by the sword, and your land shall be parceled out by line; you yourself shall die in an unclean land, and Israel shall surely go into exile away from its land.’”
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved (http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translations/ ).
The prophet Amos is a hothead. It’s clear why King Amaziah wants him to go home. Amos is a southern seer working the northern Kingdom beat. It’s rather like a U.S. citizen heading to Toronto to tell Canadians their business – or like a Mexican telling the U.S. president to shape up. Amos is from out of town; he says nasty things about your spouse and kids. He’s not nice. Still, he could use a friend. Anybody want to adopt a prophet?
—Alice Camille, 2010: A Book of Grace-Filled Days © 2009 Loyola Press, Chicago IL. For more Ignatian spiritual resources from Loyola Press, please visit www.loyolapress.com
Lord, help us to receive criticism that will better our behavior and thinking. Help us to remember that our self-worth is in doing right, not in being right. Also give us the conviction to handle conflict with the courage to speak the truth and the consideration in how that truth is spoken. When we remember that all that we do and all that we say is for your glory, we then can keep our motivation pure as we stand firm in the truth.
—The Jesuit Prayer Team