The Spirit of Cleaning Out
It was “advertised” to be an icy, snowy, generally very messy day in our area, so my husband and I—like newlyweds organizing their first home—decided to attack our kitchen cupboards, which, honestly, probably haven’t been rearranged since we moved in back in 1992.
You see, we have managed to accumulate a multitude of various plastic cups, dishes and glassware over the years that are endlessly crowding each other out for space.
Unbelievably, there were some hard decisions which resulted in what we came to call our pile of sentimental cups that would go back into an unused cupboard over the refrigerator.
These cups somehow rose to sentimental status because one or the other of us has carried them around for many years. That familiar glass cup that was always part of our childhood cupboards, the Arby’s glasses with the B.C. characters on them, or the mug that was given in honor of an 18th birthday.
But the better part of our cupboards got reorganized in a logical manner. And then, it happened. We went back to our everyday use and have been rearranging and hunting for stuff ever since.
At least everything is clean. The insides of the cupboards have been wiped down and we found that we can still work together very well to accomplish a joint task.
Speaking of work, today’s reading from the Gospel of Mark, Chapter 1, Verses 21-28, has Jesus doing some work. He had a man with an unclean spirit come up to him and with only his words, “Quiet! Come out of him!”, Jesus caused the man to convulse and be relieved of the spirit possessing him.
When Jesus taught in the synagogue on the Sabbath he taught with authority and people were “astonished at his teaching.” They were amazed to see such a display of authority by him. All he had to do was speak the words and even the spirits obeyed him!
Do you realize that when scripture is proclaimed during the Mass, God is speaking to us as well? With authority, God’s Word is revealing to us who he is, his covenant with us, his love for us, our future with him and even his history with us.
God’s Word has a prominent place in the Catholic Mass. As we process in, it is held high for all to see and honor. Throughout the Mass, much of our music, and definitely the prayers and readings are directly from scripture.
We believe that God has revealed himself to us in both scripture and Tradition. Our teaching is not limited to scripture alone. I highly recommend that you read this interesting article that explains in everyday language more about sola scriptura, the bible alone theory. It may be long, but it is definitely worth reading if you would like to learn a little more about Protestant/Catholic approaches to the bible.
I also invite you to find a Mass to attend and then watch carefully just how prominent a place scripture is throughout its entirety, and while you are there, enjoy the blessing you are given at the end of Mass as we depart to go in peace.