Usually celebrities are welcomed to their hometowns by proud family members and neighbors, but when Jesus returns to his native place, a rising star in Galilee, he’s driven out of the synagogue and almost killed by the people of Nazareth. He claims to be anointed by the Spirit of God and he’s been acclaimed elsewhere, but they see him only as the son of Joseph, the carpenter, and reject him. (Luke 4,21-30)
They stay unconvinced, it seems, because some of his family appear later at Capernaum, the base for most of his ministry, and want to take him home because he’s out of his mind,they say.
Why are they against his extraordinary claim? Is it because they know him too well? Or really, not enough? They’ve watched him grow; he’s worked on their homes and in their fields. He built some of the tables they’ve used for their meals. They know his father, his mother, his relatives. An unassuming young man whom they’ve known since infancy.
Where does he get all this?
We have to be careful that, like them, we get used to Jesus Christ, whom we may have known from our infancy. They took him for granted. His silence through the years made them blind to his power and they did not believe in him.
We know his silence too in faith and sacraments. He may act somewhere else, we may think, but not in us. We can mistake his silence for powerlessness too.
Give us faith in you, Lord.
(4th Sunday of the Year)