Plentiful Harvest 2: Do not be Afraid

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Acknowledgement of Country

We acknowledge that we are on land of the Kaurna people, the traditional custodians of the Adelaide Plains.We are awed that they celebrate the religious significance of place, plant and all living creatures; and that care for the earth is implanted in their law. We honour them and also delight in the sacred in our midst. We pray that in the power of the Holy Spirit we might work together for reconciliation and justice in this land

Matthew 10:24-31. Good News Translation

24 “No pupil is greater than his teacher; no slave is greater than his master. 25 So a pupil should be satisfied to become like his teacher, and a slave like his master. If the head of the family is called Beelzebul, the members of the family will be called even worse names! 26 “So do not be afraid of people. Whatever is now covered up will be uncovered, and every secret will be made known. 27 What I am telling you in the dark you must repeat in broad daylight, and what you have heard in private you must announce from the housetops. 28 Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; rather be afraid of God, who can destroy both body and soul in hell. 29 For only a penny you can buy two sparrows, yet not one sparrow falls to the ground without your Father's consent. 30 As for you, even the hairs of your head have all been counted. 31 So do not be afraid; you are worth much more than many sparrows!

Message

Jesus is sending the disciples out into the Harvest, doing so in his name. He goes on to tell them not to be afraid.

Do not be afraid. We are usually afraid of things that hurt us. What are you afraid of? …

Snakes are one of the first things that spring to my mind. Slithery, sneeky, hiding away. I am always thankful when cooler weather arrives because they go into hibernation.

But I don’t think Jesus was talking about snakes or spiders or anything like that. Jesus does make reference to our body being hurt but that is not something I have to worry about. Jesus does also mention being called names. That is something I have and do experience. Being called names, not taken seriously, dismissed, seen as irrelevant, deluded, foolish, all because I believe and follow Jesus. Jesus tells the disciples, tells us, to not be afraid of such things. To be afraid is to fear. Fear can imprison us, hold us back, stop us in our tracks. When fear overcomes, we cannot love others. To love others is to go out into the harvest. Do not be afraid of what others might say or think about you or to you. Speak boldly about your faith, take a stand for justice, be a voice for the voiceless, that is the harvest Jesus is talking about.

Prayer

Gracious God, you are with us in times of great joy and in our wilderness moments. Help us to stand fearlessly in solidarity with those who are marginalized, just as you have been present with us. Grant us the courage to seek justice in your name. Amen

Seasons of the Spirit