January 14, 2012 - Saturday of the First Week in Ordinary Time

1 Samuel 9:1-4, 17-19; 10:1
Psalm 21:2-7
Mark 2:13-17

In any group project, at work or school, we might have the tendency either to take over the project or to let others do all the work. Some people are glad to have all the work done for them, but other people cannot trust anyone else to do their share properly, and depending on the group and what needs to get done they might be right, but in the group project that is this world we have to admit freely that we are not the most competent or the greatest. Those who have a tendency to take over a project are at a disadvantage. Those who know how to let others do work for them are better prepared to trust in God.

In the first reading today God chooses as king a man who was better than all the other Israelites. He was taller and stronger and more handsome than any other Israelite, but God will eventually find a replacement for him. When we think of the first king of Israel, usually King David comes to mind, there was a king before King David: King Saul who we read about today. God rejected Saul because Saul was not obedient. God gave Saul a job to do with specific instructions, but Saul decided he knew how to do it better.

The scribes and Pharisees might have liked Jesus better if when he came to Earth he gave them recognition for all their hard work. Instead, he spends his time with all slackers. They do not understand why Jesus would want to be near sinners, but Jesus says that it is only natural since sinners are the ones who need his salvation. The scribes and Pharisees need his salvation too, but they do not know that. The sinners are at an advantage because they know that they need God. The scribes and Pharisees are delusional because they think that they can get along on their own strength.

What is better, to have the whole weight of the world resting on your shoulders or to have someone else carry that weight? Without question, it is better to have someone else carry the weight, but only if we can trust that someone else. If you are the sort of person who has difficulty trusting in the competence of others, that is a fault you should work on, but know without any doubt that you can trust God.