‘When Jesus saw that he answered wisely, he said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.”‘ Mark 12:34
I’m toying with how Jesus’ words “You are not far from the kingdom of God” might tie in with All Saints Sunday.
Are saints people who “are not far from the kingdom?” Or are they the people who say to others, “you are not far from the kingdom”?
Are saints people who show the light of God in their lives? Or are they people who see the light of God in the lives of others?
Are saints people who have died in the faith? Or are they people who remember those who have died by walking with those who have survived?
Are saints people who give food to the hungry? Or are they people who ask what is wrong with our world that we have people who are hungry?
The challenge in all of this is to not jump to the easy answer and say (in good protestant fashion!), “They are all saints!”
I think we need to embrace the ambiguity, the in-between-ness, and especially the occasional either/or-ness implied by these questions, because there will be times when the saints of God are called to choose one way of being faithful over another way of being faithful.
Being a saint is a risky business! It’s never clear, never obvious, and, because of this, it is frequently dangerous.
It’s also the reality to which we are all called.
Lord, have mercy.