Amos 5:14-15, 21-24
Being a biblical prophet was not for the faint of heart…one was often subject to ridicule, misunderstanding and even rejection by family and friends. Perhaps that was because prophets saw the world, not in a short sighted way as others did, but rather they saw the "bigger picture" through the eyes of God!
We have a great example of this truth in today’s readings. Amos, the fiery prophet who lived during the peaceful and prosperous reign of Jeroboam II (c. 786-746 B.C.E.), speaks directly to Israel telling them not to misinterpret their current good future. While enjoying the fruits of their labor they should always keep in mind "the less, the least and the lost." Justice should be their ultimate goal not pretty offerings and expensive pageants. It is only through the justice they demonstrate in their care of others that the offerings they so conspicuously make have any meaning to God.
In the same way, our ultimate "priest, prophet and king" Jesus encounters resistance to doing works of justice for others. In this passage from Matthew Jesus encounters and heals two demoniacs, bringing them back into the community whole and holy to "hate evil and love good." However as a result of this exorcism, the expelled demons, loving only what is evil and destructive, in entering the swine toss themselves off a cliff to drown. Given the marvelous event that has happened to their community you would think the town folks would be grateful. Rather due to short sighted self-interest and misplaced fear (what if Jesus did this to all the farm animals?), they begged Jesus to leave their district!
Where does the Lord Jesus call me to be "prophet" in my own life? Where am I often "short-sighted" and reluctant to see the "bigger" God picture due to self-interest and unreasonable fear?
Jesus help me this day to "seek good and not evil" so that I may have your life and show others "the saving power of God."