Preaching and Receiving

Jesus goes to his hometown of Nazareth. Nazareth was a small village at that time and the people would have thought they knew Jesus well. But did they? They thought how could a carpenter say the things that Jesus said or do the things that Jesus did? They would not let Jesus out of the box they had put him in and so they subsequently rejected him. They could not see the divine grace standing in front of them. All they could focus on was Jesus’s background.

All of us are called by virtue of our baptism to both preach and be receivers of the Word of God. Success and preaching the Gospel is not dependent on how many people end up following us. The key is faithfulness to God. When we preach the Gospel in our daily lives our primary concern must be to please and glorify God. Are we prepared to risk rejection for God’s sake?

As receivers of the Gospel, it is important that we remain open to what God is trying to tell us. Sometimes God will communicate his word to us through the unlikeliest of people. Jesus could work no miracle in his hometown because of the people’s lack of faith. This was not because there was anything lacking in Jesus but was a result of the people’s lack of openness. God might choose to communicate his word to us through someone who would not be of our own choosing. Are we open to that, or will we fall into the same trap as the people in Jesus’ time by judging another person’s worth by what they do and their background?