the 3rd sunday after pentecost
the PRAYER. . .
Sovereign God, ruler of all hearts, you call us to obey you, and you favor us with true freedom. Keep us faithful to the ways of your Son, that, leaving behind all that hinders us, we may steadfastly follow your paths, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.
the READING. . .
To another [Jesus] said, “Follow me.” But he said, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.” But Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead; but as for you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God.”
the DEVOTION. . .
I’ve written one reflection, already, this week. About commanding fire to come down from heaven. All the ‘i’s were dotted, ‘t’s crossed. But I set it aside and wrote this one. You see, there was another piece of this week’s gospel that wouldn’t let go. About the dead burying the dead. My dad died a little over eleven years ago, now. And I guess Father’s Day stirred up a lot of feelings.
Then, Jesus says, “Follow me!” But the one to whom he spoke says, “First let me go and bury my father.” And Jesus says to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead; but as for you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God.”
Well, I just needed to let you know – as a called and ordained minister of the church of Christ – if I had to choose between burying my father and proclaiming the gospel, the choice would be easy. I would bury my father! Each time! Every time! Afterwards, I’d try to catch up. But if that wasn’t good enough? Well, so be it. But I guess, there are times for all of us when we get distracted by the “unimportant” things of life. When we get so busy – kneeling before family and friends, washing their feet – that we forget about the more “important” ones ….
(by the way, that last line is sarcasm!)
Bob Barndt, pastor