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Daily Devotional for November 8

November 8                                             Matthew 13:53-58

                 "Is not this the carpenter's son?"

Sitting beside my friend, the stream, I consider the unbelief
of the people of Nazareth. "Why was it so hard for them to
believe in Jesus?" I ask. "They had known him all their lives."

"Perhaps that was their stumbling block," the stream replies
softly. "Perhaps they could imagine a Messiah emerging from
Jerusalem or from some other faraway place, but not from their
midst. Perhaps Jesus was too ordinary, too common, too
familiar for them to believe that he was actually the Christ."

Reflecting on the stream's words, I see that I am not unlike
the people of Nazareth. "It's easy for me to think of encounter-
ing Christ on a retreat or in a house of prayer or on a holy
mountain," I confess, "but what about meeting Christ in the
town where I live, or where I work, or on my block, or in
my home? What if Christ were that ordinary?"

"You are beginning to have eyes of faith," the stream says
gently. "For Christ always lives where you live. That is why
Jesus said, 'The realm of God is not coming with signs to be
observed; nor will they say, 'Lo, here it is!' or 'There!' for
behold, the realm of God is in the midst of you.' " (Luke

"But if the reign of God doesn't come with signs to be
observed, how shall I recognize Christ?" I ask.

The stream says quietly, "The secret is to look for Christ in
the people you encounter each day."

Today I encounter many people: friend and stranger, male and
female, young and old, gay and straight, Black and White, Asian
and Hispanic. I look into each one's face and within my heart
I ask: "Is not this the carpenter's son?"

The answer always comes back: "Yes."

From The Road to Emmaus - An inclusive devotional Edited by Joseph W. Houle

Emmaus House of Prayer - Washington D.C.


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