October 6, 2019
Pentecost 17 C
Luke 17:5-10

 

 

In the chapters preceding this week’s appointed Gospel reading from Luke, Jesus teachings on discipleship have been very challenging to say the least.

 

“Sell your possessions, and give alms.” – “Do you think that I have come to bring peace to the earth? No I tell you, but rather division!” –  “But when you give a banquet invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, and the blind and be blessed because they cannot repay you.” – “Whoever comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, and even life itself, cannot be my disciple”   “Whoever does not carry the cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.”  – “So therefore, none of you can be my disciple is you do not give up all your possessions.” – “No slave can serve two masters”  … “You cannot serve God and wealth” – “Child, remember that during your lifetime you received good things”-  “If the same person sins against you seven times a day, and turns back to you seven times and says, ‘I repent,’ you must forgive.”

 

The disciple’s response to this challenge is a cry for help, “Increase our faith!”  Jesus response to their cry for help is simply, “If you had faith the size of a mustard seed, ….”  

 

What is Jesus trying to tell us?  I don’t think he is saying we don’t have enough faith.  Everyone has at least a mustard seed’s worth of faith!  Instead Jesus is exhorting us to stop worrying about what we think we can’t do, stop obsessing about our inadequacies, stop creating excuses, stop being ruled by doubt and fear, and just do it!

 

In his letter to the Philippians, St. Paul proclaims, “We can do all things through Christ who strengthens us.” (Philippians 4:13) The key is not somehow developing more personal faith but rather placing one’s self in Christ, in the place where all things are possible, in the place where all things are made new.  In Christ God brings us together to make us strong, God brings us together to increase our faith, God brings us together to live out the dreams of the kingdom according to our gifts and passions, in Christ God brings us together and empowers us to simply “just do it.”

 

 

      1. All Things New

 

You promised me you’d make all things new
You promised me you’d see me through
I’m taking you for your word
I’m taking my life out, out to the streets
I wanna be like you

 

You walked the world with a heavenly name
You ignored society and all of its games
And you’re calling me to be one in the same
I wanna be like you

 

You promised me you’d make all things new
You promised me you’d see me through
I’m taking you for your word
I’m taking my life out, out to the streets
I wanna be like you

 

No one gonna tell me how to live anymore
I’m standing on your word nothing else and nothing more
I’m building a house on a rock not a sandcastle on the shore
I wanna be like you

 

I wanna live now!  I wanna be free!
Hold the promise that was given to me
Claiming love’s identity
I wanna be like you

 

You promised me you’d make all things new
You promised me you’d see me through
I’m taking you for your word
I’m taking my life out, out to the streets
I wanna be like you

 

 

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