The disciples get Jesus a bit riled up today! They ask him who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven, and Jesus, basically, says Hey folks, wrong question! Jesus points them to a rearranging of their attitudes and understanding of what life would be like and needs to be like in this kingdom Jesus is pronouncing.
Jesus brings a child forward and says, be humble like this child, change and be like this child. The humble are the greatest in the kingdom! And then Jesus warns about the dangers of inhibiting someone who is like this child, warns about allowing those non-humble moments (those stumbling blocks) controlling how we act in the world.
Humbleness is, for many, a hard change to accept in their outlook and understanding of the world. Jesus recognizes this when he says Occasions for stumbling are bound to come, and yet he says, if we do stumble, get up, watch were and how we are walking, change. Jesus knows we are human and fallible, but that doesn't lesson his love for us, nor does it lesson God's love for us. But that does not mean we shouldn't get up, watch were we are going, change, try again when we do stumble. We need to re-think the question, perhaps not even think about "greatness", but instead think about how we can change that question to how do we make the kingdom among us become more real, not only for us but for all those who have yet to find a way into this kingdom.
Copyright 2009, The Rev. John F. Dwyer. All Rights Reserved.