December 20, 2021 – Mark 9:38-41 – Simple Gifts

Today we are reading from Mark 9: 38-41:

38 John said to him, “Teacher, we saw someone casting out demons in your name, and we tried to stop him, because he was not following us.” 39 But Jesus said, “Do not stop him; for no one who does a deed of power in my name will be able soon afterward to speak evil of me. 40 Whoever is not against us is for us. 41 For truly I tell you, whoever gives you a cup of water to drink because you bear the name of Christ will by no means lose the reward.

Today we see Jesus showing us that His mission is bigger than you and me, bigger than the church or denomination or theological tradition that I’m part of.  The kingdom is made up of all of those who are seeking to follow Jesus as Lord. 

Even if they worship different.  Or believe different.  Or look different.  Or any of these things.  Jesus’ kingdom is big, and it needs all of us.  We want to find the things we disagree about and focus on those.  Oftentimes, we make mountains out of molehills.  We as Christians, regardless of denomination or anything like that, how so much more in common than what we disagree over.  

We need to focus on our common effort to spread and live out the Gospel. 

And we live out that Gospel, not through what we think of as “great things” but through simple gifts.  Gifts like a cup of colder water, given in His name.  That’s what matters.  

Not great acts done in our name, but simple gifts given in His.  That is what matters. 

So, as we approach Christmas this week, let’s remember the wideness of God’s kingdom and the beauty of simple gifts.  Let’s be faithful with all that our God has given us. 

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