Seventh Sunday of Easter

Year B Readings:

  • Acts 1:15-17, 21-26
  • Psalm 1
  • 1 John 5:9-13
  • John 17:6-19

The Disciple Not Chosen

Joseph Barsabbas was not chosen
to take the place of Judas Iscariot.
Scripture says, “they cast lots
for them, and the lot fell on Matthias,”
and Matthias was added to the eleven apostles.

What does it mean to cast lots?
Did they flip a coin? Roll the dice?
Draw names out of a hat?
Did they play rock paper scissors
where Joseph put down two fingers
and lucky Matthias put down a fist?

Joseph was the disciple not chosen,
but he was not to be deterred.
Tradition has it he became the bishop
of Eleutheropolis at the end of his life,
which is quite the accomplishment since
Eleutheropolis was not founded for another
two centuries. But never mind.
He was with the Lord from the beginning
and played a role in the rising church.

We all cope with the not-chosen
experience. Not winning the election.
Not winning the beauty contest.
Not accepted to the favored university.
Not earning the promotion. Take heart:
famous people faced adversity,
but like Joseph were not deterred.

They soldiered on. For example,
Michael Jordan was cut from the varsity
in his sophomore year at Laney High
because he was not tall enough
and then was chosen a risible third
in the draft of ’84 behind
Sam Bowie, who was the worst pick
ever in all professional sports!

Does anyone remember Barack Obama
losing to Bobby Rush in the year
2000 by a margin of two to one?

The strong consider the chance defeat
the starting point for a new mission,
a bright second chance to listen
and learn the Lord’s call for you.

May 16, 2021

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