When the days drew near for him to be taken up, he set his face to go to Jerusalem. And he sent messengers ahead of him. On their way they entered a village of the Samaritans to make ready for him; but they did not receive him, because his face was set toward Jerusalem. When his disciples James and John saw it, they said, “Lord, do you want us to command fire to come down from heaven and consume them?” But he turned and rebuked them. Then they went on to another village.
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.
At some point in our lives, we have all been rejected for some reason or another. Rejected from a relationship, a team, a school, a job. We may have felt the same anger and frustration that James and John experienced when Jesus and his followers were not welcomed into the village. The Samaritans did not welcome them because of their heritage as Jews journeying to Jerusalem–their spiritual home. James and John want justice to be served for the lack of hospitality.
Sometimes, we expect a warm welcome, or for our words to be heard well. Sometimes we deny entry to those who can help us. Sometimes we refuse those who need food or a place to rest. Thankfully Jesus does not condemn; he continues his work of saving us.
Jesus, help me to welcome you into my life, especially when you disguise yourself in those around me.
“In the kingdom of charity, one prefers to suffer some inconvenience rather than inconvenience the neighbor.”
—St. Vincent DePaul