“The crowds went looking for him, and when they came to him, they tried to prevent him from leaving them.”But he said to them, ‘To the other towns also I must proclaim the good news of the Kingdom of God, because for this purpose I have been sent.’” (Luke 4:43-44)
In today’s Gospel, Jesus is busy about Capernaum, proclaiming the presence of the kingdom of God by healing the sick. Unlike the folks in his hometown who earlier rejected him, these people know a good thing when they see it, and they want him to stay.
For me, the reading brings to mind the times when I have wanted things to stay the way they are. There were moments when I just wished I could stop time’s march and enjoy each of my children at special points of growth, wonder, learning and curiosity. Anyone who knows me understands that I hate moving with a purple passion, that having roots is very important to me. And, I am a loyal worker who experiences tremendous internal strife when I feel called to a new job.
Sure, Jesus is saying to the folks in Capernaum that He has to move on because the Kingdom of God is for everyone, everywhere, not just a favorite place where He is the favored one. He has to allow God’s grace to unfold according to the purpose for which He has come. So it is with our lives. Every letting go brings about wonderful new possibilities. We can’t stop time or stay put if all that God intends for us is to unfold in grace.