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July 30, 2021

Mt 13: 54-58

He came to his hometown and began to teach the people in their synagogue, so that they were astounded and said, “Where did this man get this wisdom and these deeds of power? Is not this the carpenter’s son? Is not his mother called Mary? And are not his brothers James and Joseph and Simon and Judas? And are not all his sisters with us? Where then did this man get all this?” 

And they took offense at him. But Jesus said to them, “Prophets are not without honor except in their own country and in their own house.” And he did not do many deeds of power there, because of their unbelief.

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.

Blinded by our assumptions

A few decades ago, after talking to a high school theology class about the remarkable 20th century discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, an absent-minded and frustrated student raised his hand and exclaimed: “I just don’t understand why finding some squirrels by the Dead Sea is so important!” His words revealed that he totally misunderstood everything I had said in that class. As I spoke about scrolls, he was trying to imagine squirrels. 

Similarly, in today’s Gospel, those who listened to Jesus were offended. Jesus was mending broken lives and sharing profound wisdom and some who listened could not get beyond their familiar but inaccurate assumptions and hasty conclusions about him. How have our unexamined assumptions and hasty conclusions blinded us to the wisdom of Christ today?

Mark McNeil is the Assistant Principal for Formation at Strake Jesuit College Preparatory in Houston.

 

Prayer

Christ Jesus, Wisdom of the Father, help me to gaze upon you with the eyes of a child this day rather than through the eyes of smug familiarity. Amen.

—Mark McNeil


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July 30, 2021

Mt 13: 54-58

He came to his hometown and began to teach the people in their synagogue, so that they were astounded and said, “Where did this man get this wisdom and these deeds of power? Is not this the carpenter’s son? Is not his mother called Mary? And are not his brothers James and Joseph and Simon and Judas? And are not all his sisters with us? Where then did this man get all this?” 

And they took offense at him. But Jesus said to them, “Prophets are not without honor except in their own country and in their own house.” And he did not do many deeds of power there, because of their unbelief.

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.

Blinded by our assumptions

A few decades ago, after talking to a high school theology class about the remarkable 20th century discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, an absent-minded and frustrated student raised his hand and exclaimed: “I just don’t understand why finding some squirrels by the Dead Sea is so important!” His words revealed that he totally misunderstood everything I had said in that class. As I spoke about scrolls, he was trying to imagine squirrels. 

Similarly, in today’s Gospel, those who listened to Jesus were offended. Jesus was mending broken lives and sharing profound wisdom and some who listened could not get beyond their familiar but inaccurate assumptions and hasty conclusions about him. How have our unexamined assumptions and hasty conclusions blinded us to the wisdom of Christ today?

Mark McNeil is the Assistant Principal for Formation at Strake Jesuit College Preparatory in Houston.

 

Prayer

Christ Jesus, Wisdom of the Father, help me to gaze upon you with the eyes of a child this day rather than through the eyes of smug familiarity. Amen.

—Mark McNeil


Please share the Good Word with your friends!

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