September 29

Mark 9:38-41

“But Jesus said, ‘Do not stop him; for no one who does a deed of power in my name will be able soon afterward to speak evil of me.’” vs. 39

The disciples had a territorial streak in them. They wanted to be the sole proprietors of the Jesus movement and they didn’t want anyone else horning in on their business. And Jesus could care less! He didn’t even care particularly if people joined his gang of disciples…what counted in his mind was that God’s work got done. He believed that if everyone could get on the same page as far as mission and service were concerned they’d stop all the in-fighting and rivalries would cease. We can learn a lesson from Jesus. We get so caught up in all the differences between denominations and faith communities and even imagine that God cares about these things as much as we do. We paint other religions in the most unfavorable light and stubbornly assert that only we have all the right answers. Naturally we are most comfortable in a faith tradition that is familiar and of course we are drawn to its basic teachings…but that doesn’t mean that everyone else is wrong. Instead of undermining others we are called to work with them in establishing the kingdom of God and bringing peace and hope to our troubled world.  When we can get on the same service page we grow in appreciation and love for one another…and powerful deeds can be done.

Thought for the Day: What other religions do I appreciate the most?

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