Homily: He Could Work No Miracles There

It’s really sad to note the attitude of Jesus’ home town to their suddenly famous neighbor. The tragic consequence of their refusal to abandon their provincial narrowness is that Jesus “was not able to perform any mighty deeds there, He was amazed at their lack of faith”, It indicates how powerful other people’s negative opinions of us – and our negative opinions of others — can hinder their ability to do their best, even in the case of the Son of God!

They could not open themselves to a world beyond their own safe little village. Of course, this new world that Jesus has entered is not just the world beyond Nazareth; it is the world beyond this world itself!

Authentic faith always expands our horizons and enriches our imagination Real faith enables us to be born into a world of wonder and hope and endless possibilities

     Life implications

The attitudes of the people of Nazareth toward Jesus show something far more dangerous than a small-town mentality. These people represent all of us when we want to make ourselves the measure of everything.

We forget that all the really important things in life are always beyond our control, such as, love and happiness and life itself. They are gifts to be received, not problems to be discussed and mastered. Faith gives us the courage to trust the world of God’s promises and to open ourselves to these wonderful and uncontrollable realities.

 When we are afraid to take such risks, we have no choice but to defend our tiny territory and to deny everything that lies beyond it. On the other hand, Faith, when it is truly operative in our lives, puts us in touch with God’s love and so allows us to share the experience of Jesus, It is the experience of God’s love, discovered in the gift of our heavenly Father, that allows us to take the risk that Jesus took and that leads us with Him, through trials and adversities, to the only world that really matters.

This “ordinary” world of ours is full of God’s presence and God’s promise. We need only to open our eyes. St. Paul knew this, for he wrote, “God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong”. It is even true in our second Reading today, where Paul speaks of his own weakness, the ‘thorn in his flesh’, as that which gives power to his prophetic message.

God can work wonders through us, just as we are, provided we simply trust in his Love and His Power.        (Demetrius R. Dumm, O.S.B.)


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