This reflection was given during the daily Eucharist in the chapel of an Anglican convent. The Scripture it references is Matthew 10:1-15.
“If the house is worthy…”
In giving his instructions to his disciples as they set out on their mission, Jesus tells them to find a worthy household as their base of operations in each town. And he has some pretty harsh words for houses or towns that are not worthy!
I wonder if you’ve ever asked yourself what makes a worthy household – or whether your household is worthy?
If you asked my mother, she might say something about housekeeping standards (according to her, I fail dismally), but I rather suspect something else might be going on.
The word here that means “worthy” comes from the marketplace; it’s the word for something which is substantial enough to tip the balance in a scale. It means something that has weight or gravitas. We might go so far as to say that Jesus is talking here about a household which is serious.
It suggests that a “worthy” household – a substantial or serious household – is somehow more likely to be a place where the gospel is well received, and people are likely to respond to God. Which says to me that it’s not about social worth or substance; it’s not about money or having a McMansion, but about the hearts and attitudes of the people who live there.
Do we cultivate a heart which is serious about what is good? A mind which is well-equipped to take on substantial teaching? An attitude which is truly worthy of what Jesus puts in front of us?
Questions I leave for you to ponder.