Is 1:10-17 / Mt 10:34-11:1
When we think of Jesus, the images that usually come to mind are of a man of peace who brings healing and forgiveness to people, the man who saved the life of the woman caught in the act of adultery, and the man who raised dead people back to life. So when we hear today’s gospel, it really rattles our teeth.
What does Jesus mean when He says that His mission is not to spread peace but division? What follows sounds like a script from the worst of all soap operas, where everyone is fighting with everyone else. Could this possibly be what Jesus intends? Certainly not.
Jesus’ point, which He expresses in His customary hyperbole, is that His mission is to press us to make serious choices, to speak a clear “Yes” or “No” to God, and not just a lifelong “Maybe.” As He says in another place, His whole life is a wholehearted “Yes” and never anything less.
If you find yourself wandering about in the Land of the Eternal Maybe, neither getting better nor growing visibly worse, this is God’s invitation to a new life. Don’t turn it down! It could be the last.