Then Jesus’ mother and brothers arrived. Standing outside, they sent someone in to call him. A crowd was sitting around him, and they told him, “Your mother and brothers are outside looking for you.” “Who are my mother and my brothers?” he asked. Then he looked at those seated in a circle around him and said, “Here are my mother and my brothers! Whoever does God’s will is my brother and sister and mother.”
I remembering reading this story when I was younger and being so disappointed in Jesus. How could Jesus not even greet his mother and brothers? Earlier in the chapter, it says that he hasn’t even really eaten properly, so his family has come to set him straight! How could Jesus not even meet them?
But here’s the thing- though I’ve had a lot of hardship in my life, the greatest part of my childhood was easily my family. I had a mom, dad, brothers, and a sister who loved one another and are still close to this day. My world lens in regards to family has a very high expectation. So of course, I would be disturbed to think that Jesus would callus to a different understanding of family.
However, as I’ve grown and met many friends with different family experiences, I now know that not everyone considers their families to be the safest, most loving, most supportive community. In fact, for many, their immediate family can be quite a scary place.When I read this story through that lens, I am met with an intense feeling of hope and relief. Family and everything that family is supposed to be can happen for everyone.
Beyond that, we worship a God whois inviting all people to be a part of it. A God who says, ‘When you come tome, when you draw near, when you listen to my voice, YOU. ARE. MY. FAMILY.’What a beautiful hope for all people and a powerful reminder of what the church is.
First Covenant Church, we are a family. We are centered in the love and forgiveness of a God who died so thatwe may have new life with the Creator. In this time of certainty, let us be sure of this- we belong to God. We belong to one another.