by Debbonnaire Kovacs
That's you. That's me. Jesus lays his hands on our heads and says, "Go. Don't take extra clothes or money or food. Carry your walking stick–you're going to be on the road for a while. Stick together; two heads are better than one. I hereby give you authority over demons and illness and above all, authority to spread the good news far and wide. Have fun! Let me know how it turns out." And he turns away, headed for "other villages," ones that were more willing to listen to him than his own hometown, where they thought he was getting above himself.
So we start walking. Where shall we go first? Do we just head for the nearest village? (Should we avoid our own hometowns? You know how they are!) We have. . . I'm having a hard time getting my head around this. Let's take inventory.
Between us, we have one outfit of clothing each, including sturdy sandals. Hope it doesn't get cold, or rain too much.
We have walking sticks. That ought to be helpful. Somehow. . .
I have 97 cents and you have almost $3. That ought to get us a couple of tacos. Did he say they'd feed us? What if they don't?
We have authority over demons. Wait. Authority over demons? Illness, too. Like when he spits on people's eyes, or touches children and says "Be healed." You can do that now? Me, too? Seriously??
Jesus sends out his disciples two by two. How many times have we read or heard this story? Have we really taken it in? The disciples–you know, those guys who were always missing the point, always arguing, always two steps behind Jesus–those guys have authority from God over unclean spirits and go around raising people from the dead! Judas, even, no doubt.
Where would you start? How do you find out who has the demons and needs to be rescued, and who is sick? How do you learn what the good news is for each individual? (We might have to start by listening, I'm guessing.) Because, the GOOD NEWS is the same for everybody, but beyond that, nothing is ever the same for anybody, I've noticed. And why do you think we're supposed to go together?