54 And when he was come into his own country, he taught them in their synagogue, insomuch that they were astonished, and said, Whence hath this man this wisdom, and these mighty works?
55 Is not this the carpenter’s son? is not his mother called Mary? and his brethren, James, and Joses, and Simon, and Judas?
56 And his sisters, are they not all with us? Whence then hath this man all these things?
57 And they were offended in him. But Jesus said unto them, A prophet is not without honour, save in his own country, and in his own house.
58 And he did not many mighty works there because of their unbelief.
Matthew 13:54-58 (King James Version)
Ever did what you thought was the right thing, only to be criticized by those you were doing it for? Ever did what you thought God was leading you to do, yet it was not appreciated by those who you did it for? Been there, done that, and have the pictures to prove it.
Right now in my neck of the woods, a “winter weather advisory” is posted for an upcoming snowfall Saturday night. This usually means that snow’s on its way and those in the area in question should get ready for it. We’re expected to have up to 6 to 8 inches in the NYC area, and meteorologists are giving this “advisory” so we’re not caught off guard.
Tonight, I’m giving a Lenten “advisory” to you my Dear Readers. As you go through this Lenten journey, God will speak to your hearts and will push you into new directions. Some of those directions will involved how you interact with others in your life (usually those close to you). God will move you to perform some act of Christ-like love, compassion, or kindness; maybe even forgiveness-beyond your normal sphere of activities. You will follow the leading of the Holy Spirit and reach out…
…And it’s not appreciated, or worst, criticized. All of a sudden you feel like the old tow truck pictured at the start of tonight’s post. You feel like the wind is taken from your sails. Your feelings are hurt as you feel unjustly treated. Shit, the “un-Christ-like” part of you wants to (fill in the blank) them. It sucks, yet it happens. As you grow during this Season, beware there will be those who don’t (or worse, won’t) grow. I know, I’ve been there myself-even with those closest to me.
However know that you’re in good company. Jesus caught the same in tonight’s Scripture. Here was a man infused with the Divine that we equate him with Him/Her. Jesus was going through his old neighborhood, ushering in the Realm of God to those who knew him from back in the day. Instead of listening to Jesus’s message and exchanging their meager existences for abundant life, these yahoos begin to question Jesus. They didn’t appreciate his ministering to them, but instead criticized him by “putting him in his place.” They didn’t see the Cosmic Christ ushering in God’s Realm; no, they saw a local boy that they felt could not teach them. Hence, Jesus made the above statement and was hindered by their attitudes from performing miracles.
If it happened to Jesus, it will happen to us. It happened to the other Spiritual people God sent to us over the ages. However, we cannot let what others feel stop us. We have to grow and keep growing. You see, those who diss you will be the ones who lose out. They will one day learn what God was trying to do for them (through you) after you pass their way. I bet you there were some in Jesus’s neck of the woods who would later hear what Jesus did and would say, “Maybe we could’ve listened more….”
In the meantime, let us continue on our Lenten journey to become more and more Christ-like in our lives. So-like Jesus-we too can make a positive impact in our world.
Just a Lenten Advisory for tonight. Peace.
(Image: Old GMC tow truck in New Egypt, New Jersey. Taken today)