The parables weren’t offered to make us feel good about our discipleship. They are intentionally provoking, and challenge us to a greater faithfulness. The Pearl of Great Price should not be understood as a self-centered congratulatory allegory, but a hard challenge to deeper discipleship.
The power of God is not offered for our tribe, our kingdom, or our gain. Christ’s ascension is just another necessary action of God in critique of the self-motivation of disciples. Christ once more calls us to be prepared for the Spirit to lead us in dispersing power as we share God’s love with all persons, even to the ends of the earth.
For St. Francis of Assisi, the way of poverty wasn’t about living with nothing, it was about living without any allegiance due to money. It was about serving God, only.
To be faithful to our call as a church community, it takes being engaged disciples. You don’t have to be perfect, highly educated, wealthy, or beautiful – you just have to be willing to respond, knowing Christ goes with you.
The new testament makes it clear, Jesus really is a home wrecker. But perhaps not in the way we’d imagine.
The disciples were losing hope of Jesus’ future after a successful start to the week, which began with shouts of Hosanna! But in the breaking and pouring of a jar of alabaster over the head of Christ, the week begins to shift.