We want to know what you think! Take the RFTV Survey today! >>

“Paired Up!” by Brian Flanagan, Fiat Ventures

Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

 Have you ever been paired up with someone for a project in school?  I don’t mean when you get to pick your best friend to work with, I mean when the teacher assigns you a partner.  There’s always such tension in the room right before the pairs are announced or posted.

Will you luck out and be matched up with the smartest girl in the class?  Or on the flip side, will you get stuck with the guy who’s notorious for not putting much effort into his work, and you know you’ll have to carry the load yourself?  Maybe you’ll end up being paired up with the girl or guy you’ve secretly liked for a while, and now you have an excuse to talk to them and spend time working on the project after school.

In the Gospel this Sunday, we hear about Jesus summoning the Twelve and sending them out two by two to preach and to heal people.  I bet it was much the same feeling in the room when Jesus was giving out the pairings for this “activity”.  Maybe James and James were paired together because Jesus thought it would be amusing.  Philip was excited to hear that he was paired with Matthew the former tax collector, since Matthew could handle all the receipts for gas and tolls, but then Jesus told them not to take money for the journey.  Maybe Bartholomew was excited to be paired up with Peter, since it’s always “Peter, James, and John” this and “Peter, James, and John” that, and maybe he’d get to see something interesting for once and feel like he was part of the inner circle.

Then there might have been some Apostles with clashing personalities paired together.  Andrew, always optimistic and first in line to follow, as he did for John the Baptist and now Jesus…paired with Thomas, who was having some…doubts about the assignment.  Or maybe Thaddeus was paired with Judas, and he just always had a bad feeling about that guy and wasn’t looking forward to going from town to town with this man he didn’t quite trust.

We can’t always choose those whom God puts in our lives.  We know this from our families.  We might be close with our siblings or might fight all the time, but in the end we’re stuck with them.  This can also be the case when God calls us on a particular mission; we might end up working with someone who isn’t exactly our favorite person.  We might get put in a summer mission trip work group with someone we had a falling out with in 2nd grade.  We might be on the leadership team for youth ministry with someone we try to avoid in the hallway at school.  Maybe we feel like God is calling us to talk to a good friend who’s going down a bad path, and we need to involve another friend of theirs in the conversation, even though that person has hurt us in the past.

But God can often do the greatest good through these partnerships that we wouldn’t choose for ourselves.  This person might have just the right thing to say when we don’t, and we might have an insight into something that they haven’t thought of.  It forces us to look past the things we don’t like about this person and to see Christ in them.  And once we do that, who better to be paired up with for a journey than Jesus?

Tags: , , , , , ,

Connect with Us

See our latest posts on Facebook and Youtube

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply