Gospel – December 7, 2019 – Matthew 9:35-10:1, 5A, 6-8
Jesus went around to all the towns and villages,
teaching in their synagogues,
proclaiming the Gospel of the Kingdom,
and curing every disease and illness.
At the sight of the crowds, his heart was moved with pity for them
because they were troubled and abandoned,
like sheep without a shepherd.
Then he said to his disciples,
“The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few;
so ask the master of the harvest
to send out laborers for his harvest.”
Then he summoned his Twelve disciples
and gave them authority over unclean spirits to drive them out
and to cure every disease and every illness.
Jesus sent out these twelve after instructing them thus,
“Go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.
As you go, make this proclamation: ‘The Kingdom of heaven is at hand.’
Cure the sick, raise the dead,
cleanse lepers, drive out demons.
Without cost you have received; without cost you are to give.”
The world is so full of those in need of healing. Jesus today seems to be overwhelmed with the need. He’s healing but the crowds keep growing.
So, he calls – us, his disciples. We are the laborers. We are the ones he sends. I think back to the recent trajectory of my friends in faith – my community of believers. So many laborers waiting for the shepherd to send them. We need the shepherd to call to us. We cannot be left in the sheepfold.
No work is done in the pen. Jesus knew that so he called his sheep and sent them. The whole world has needs and without us those needs will continue to grow out of hand.
I have a friend, David Handler, who helped me so much in gathering my understanding of my mission. He was, for me, part of the shepherd’s call. Sadly, I don’t get to talk with him like I once did but that is how we affect one another. Very often we don’t even know it.
God calls – we go.
Today we are called to labor in the fields – will you go?
At least that’s what I heard Him say…