Yesterday we heard a story about a black woman for whom there was no room in a white church.
The New Testament speaks of times there was no room for Jesus.
“And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in bands of cloth, and laid him in a manger, for there was no room for them in the inn.” (Luke 2:7)
When Jesus preached in his home town of Nazareth, his listeners were enraged at what he said, and “they got up, and led him to the brow of the hill on which their town was built, so that they might throw him off the cliff. But he passed through the midst of them and went on his way.” (Luke 4:29-30)
In the land of the Gerasenes, Jesus drove an unclean spirit out of a wild man. When the residents of the area saw the man sitting calmly, “they began to beg Jesus to leave their neighborhood.” (Mark 5:17)
When Jesus wished to enter a Samaritan village, he was turned away. The villagers “did not receive him, because his face was set toward Jerusalem.” (Luke 9:53)
Many people did not want Jesus around. The irony, of course, is that his mission is to bring all people into one. His life, death, resurrection and ascension are God’s way of drawing all people into divine love.
God of love, through your beloved Son, you seek to unite this world in mercy. Use us as your agents of reconciliation and peace. Amen.