I love the Gospel passages when Jesus summons the Twelve apostles, gives them their mission and sends them forth. Maybe it’s because I work for the Church and can easily see myself in their shoes as I receive my mission, my vocation as a youth minister, from the Lord and am sent forth into my parish to serve the young people. Maybe it’s something different.
However, what strikes me about this particular Gospel, is not the action of the sending forth; rather, it’s the instructions that Jesus gives them. “Take nothing for the journey, neither walking stick, nor sack, nor food, nor money, and let no one take a second tunic.”
Um, what did He say? Take nothing? Really? That would have been my immediate gut reaction if I was really in the apostles’ shoes. A walking stick or a second tunic probably would have been helpful for a journey such as this, let alone food and money. There is no mention of complaining or second-guessing in the rest of the Gospel passage, though. The apostles went out and did what they were told – proclaimed the good news and cured diseases.
Jesus was trying to teach the apostles – and us, by extension – a lesson in trust, in total reliance upon Him. The apostles didn’t need to bring food or money on their journey because the Lord would provide for all of their needs, which included their physical and material needs.
We can never learn too many lessons about trusting in the Lord. It’s something that we can all grow in, all the time, and I’ll be the first one to admit it. I know I need to trust the Lord more in my daily life, in my spiritual life, in youth ministry, in everything. Again, maybe that’s why I like this passage so much, because it invites me to grow in trust like the apostles did. I am reminded that He will provide for me and for His Church.
As you prepare to go out on your journey, in your mission, how can you invite the Lord to provide for your needs today? For this week? A simple prayer to the Holy Spirit is a great way to start!
Erin Madden is a Cleveland native and graduate of Franciscan University of Steubenville. She is passionate about the Lord Jesus, all things college sports and telling stories and she is blessed enough to get paid for all three of her passions. You can catch her on old episodes of the Clarence & Peter Podcast on YouTube as well as follow her on Twitter@erinmadden2016.
Feature Image Credit: Galen Crout, https://unsplash.com/photos/fItRJ7AHak8