Mark 9:41

If anyone gives you a cup of water because you belong to Christ, I tell you, he will assuredly not lose his reward.


karma’s gift goes beyond
all religious boundaries
it belongs to no one
and connects to all

whether known or not
kindness delivered
blesses in both directions

continue offering an opportunity
for hospitality to shine within
each encounter

water will turn to wine
as person turns to person
with giving and receiving


We have heard in 9:39 that those who do “powerful” work of good, even if they are not part of the disciple’s LinkedIn network, are to be received as though they were a most important connection.

Waetjen160 reminds us:

In fact, there are those on the outside who may not be engaged in mighty works of liberation and healing. For one reason or another their resources are minimal. The most that they can do is to give the disciples a drink of water. Yet even they are not to be excluded, for their act, as insignificant as it may seem, contributes to human well-being. They too will have their reward.

Humans are famous for having a graduated scale of importance. We adore our hierarchies. Even at our lowest, we dream of finally being recognized and that when we are in charge there will come a new flowering of significance and life for all. By such dreams are we kept in thrall to economic and political systems until they can no longer cast their spell and their bankruptcy shines for all to see.

We have here a return to the sending out of the Twelve to stay with the first who will be hospitable, who will offer water after a dusty day of traveling. They are to stay with those who are generous in the little they have and do their work of healing in the context of humility.

Note in passing that the phrase, “because you belong to Christ”, is highly disputed even though it is clearly present in the earliest manuscripts. It’s difficulties are best resolved by passing over it and keeping the connection between those who do a mighty work and those who give a cup of water. This keeps the emphasis on healing and hospitality, not the status of the one who partners with others.

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