Thursday of the Sixth Week of Ordinary Time
Mark 8: 27-33
I love to paint! I had to repaint my bathroom ceiling after I had a small water leak this summer. What I do not like and I wish I could change is all the prep work that it takes to get to the painting. I had to fix the leak with drywall compound, I had to clear everything out of the bathroom, I had to get the paint, and gather the brushes, and then I could actually begin painting. Our readings are about things we like and about things that people want to change.
In our Gospel, Jesus is talking to his disciples, and he asks them, “Who do the people say that I am?” They replied some say you are John the Baptist, others Elijah, still others a great prophet.” But then he asks, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter responded, “You are the Christ.” Peter got it right because he loved the Lord. However, when Jesus continues by saying he will be rejected by others, suffer greatly at the hands of the soldiers, and will be killed. Peter wants to change this part, because it is too hard to hear.
In ancient times and even today to be wealthy was to be seen as blessed by God. Conversely, to be poor was understood to be stricken by God. So, when the writer James, in our first reading says, “It is easy to love the wealthy, because you think you too will be blessed in some way.” The challenge is to love everyone the same way. We wish we could change this in our own lives as it is hard to do.
Who do we say Christ is for us? What do we love about Christ? What are the challenges we face and might want to change because of Christ? Are we willing to give everything to Christ?