A Prophet Is Honored
19 July 2018
GraceNotes – A Journey of Discovery
Scripture: John 4:43-45 (Click link for scripture in Bible Gateway)
43 At the end of the two days, Jesus went on to Galilee. 44 He himself had said that a prophet is not honored in his own hometown. 45 Yet the Galileans welcomed him, for they had been in Jerusalem at the Passover celebration and had seen everything he did there. (John 4:43–45 NLT)
In Jesus’ hometown, Nazareth, the synagogue attenders questioned his legitimacy (Luke 4:16-30), saying, “How can this be? Isn’t this Joseph’s son?” Then when Jesus told them God cares about non-Jews as well as Jews, they became an angry mob who tried to throw him off a cliff! “Who does he think he is?” Matthew says (Matthew 13:53-58) that in Nazareth “They were deeply offended and refused to believe in him.” Yet around Galilee, in Cana, in Capernaum, and in the other villages, people were more open to Jesus, to his message, and to his power.
I remember hearing someone say, “An expert is someone 500 miles from home with a briefcase!” Now, of course, it would be “someone 500 miles from home with a laptop!” The point is, it’s way too easy and way too common to assume someone from somewhere else is knowledgeable and important and to underrate or discount the people we know—the people “we grew up with.” We limit people in our own minds by what we think we know of them. We limit their ability to influence us and we limit our capacity to learn from or receive from them. And I wonder if there isn’t sometimes a little jealousy and envy in that as well. Here’s some things I know:
• I know we can learn from other people. If we can avoid creating the “prophet without honor” situation, we can learn from our parents, our peers, and from our kids. In fact, if we are life-long learners we can learn from pretty much anyone in pretty much any situation.
• I know we can influence other people. Some people miss greatness because they’ve been given a low picture of themselves and their possibilities. We can help them see the good in themselves they can’t see for themselves.
Father, Please help my friends and me to avoid making judgments and assumptions about people because we think “He’s no better than I am,” or because “She’s just a kid from the neighborhood!” Help us be open to give encouragement and to receive what they have to offer. Help us to be lifelong learners! Amen!