Maybe it shows an OCD to say this, but I think that the Gospel text for this Sunday [Mark 10:2-16] should include the first verse of the chapter. There is a helpful perspective within that verse.
That first verse goes this way: ‘And he [Jesus] left there and went to the region of Judea and beyond the Jordan, and crowds gathered to him again. And again, as was his custom, he taught them.’
The location is so important here. Jesus is getting extremely close to Jerusalem. One of the last major geographical things he will do, before going ‘up’ to Jerusalem, will be to cross the Jordan river.
What would you talk about if you knew you were that close to your death? Jesus chooses to talk about some small things.
When the subject of divorce is brought up, Jesus brings up a small passage of scripture that basically goes back to the beginning of time. And, a little later, he also talks about little children. And he says that we should be like them.
The Jordan river was a big, important river. And Jerusalem is still a big city—in comparison to the other cities in the area of course. But Jesus wants us to focus on the little things.
In our lives today, it is the big things that usually get the most attention. We are going to see more and more people wanting to make a big ‘splash’ in society, so that they will be getting their several seconds of fame. And the media does a great job of making sure this happens.
The next time a crowd is mentioned, and this time it is a ‘considerable’ or ‘worthy’ crowd, Jesus is near Jericho. And he is heading to Jerusalem for his ‘grand entrance’.
Jesus heals a blind man who not only recognizes who Jesus is as the ‘Son of David’, but the man also ends up following him.
Again, it is the small things that are important to Jesus. And that helps, the next time you are feeling somewhat ‘small’.
Considerable crowds continue to gather at churches literally throughout the world. And, hopefully, they are content to focus on some of the small things that Jesus pointed out while he was walking around this earth … his little ones, his teachings, his words, his sacraments.