Sunday, September 30, 2012


Reef Lection
It is said that plagiarism is the highest form of flattery.  Well, this is not really plagiarism, it is "copiarism."  This is the most dynamic way I have of saying "Amen" to the ideas found below.   
My brother's name is in the title.  Under the Pseudonym "Reef Lection" he puts out a short daily meditation.  He sends it only to a limited number of close friends and relatives and one enemy.  
For now, enjoy this special treat.  It's a keeper.
Paul Dion, enemy # 1  [(;-(-[

Book of Numbers 11: 25-29
Mark 9: 38-48

Two of the three Scripture passages chosen for today's Liturgy are remarkably similar.  In the Book of Numbers a ceremony takes place where Moses gathers a number of people.  At one point "...the Lord bestowed the "spirit"(taken from Moses) on seventy elders."  There are two other elders who were a part of the encampment who did not go to the gathering, but upon whom the "Spirit" was also bestowed, and went about the camp prophesying.  This did not set well with Joshua who had been Moses' aide since he was a lad.  He went to Moses and complained about these two guys.  They weren't doing anything wrong.  Just the opposite in fact.  Moses told Josh to cool his jets.  Hey, good is good, right?  In fact Moses says he wished the Lord would bestow the spirit on all of them.  Centuries later, undoubtedly by design, Jesus runs into the same thing.  Young John comes to Jesus to let Him know that there were some people who were chasing out demons in His name.  They were obviously people they didn't know and were not following Jesus day to day. Jesus says, "So what?  They are doing good aren't they, and they are invoking my Name to do it.  Isn't that just dandy?"  What Jesus actually said was, "There is no one who performs a mighty deed in my name who can at the same time speak ill of me.  For anyone who is not against us is for us."  You really have to read these passages carefully and slowly to get the flavor of what Joshua says to Moses and what John says to Jesus.  There is definitely some jealousy there.  "These guys are stealing our thunder!"  I can truly relate to that.  For forty five years I worked in broadcasting, 25 in radio and 20 in television.  During those forty five years I made darn sure I got credit for whatever went out over the air with my voice on it.  In fact, I was fired from my last job in radio because my employer refused to pay me my "talent" fee.  We're talking $25.00.  During the 20 years I worked in television, I had to be very diligent on a daily basis to be sure they spelled my name correctly at the end of a broadcast when the "credit roll" comes up, and to be sure I was advised whenever a commercial with my voice on it was dubbed and sent to another TV station.  I got a one time "talent" fee for that.  Now we're talking even smaller potatoes, $6.50 per dub.  Over my 20 year tenure, I probably averaged $200.00 a year in "talent" fees.  Woohoo!  I was like a dog marking my territory and, God forbid, someone else should get credit for what I did, or, even worse, that I got no credit at all.  And for what?  Who even pays attention to the "credit roll" anyway?  Besides, most of the time it scrolls up so fast no one can read them anyway.  Pride!  Jealousy!  He's prophesying and we're not sure he should be!  He's healing and doing good in the name of MY Jesus.  How dare him/her!  What does it really matter.  Fortunately, that part of my life is behind me...way behind me, but I still have to ask myself if that kind of thinking still exists within me.  For example, How do I feel when I hear that you send these reflections out to other people that you know, and how do I know that you're not taking credit for them instead of me?  You know what?  I think that is just fabulous!  I truly hope you do that.  It does not matter whether I get the credit or you get the credit, because the one who should really get the credit in the Holy Spirit, for She is the author of most of these Reef Lections.  It doesn't matter whether it comes from me or from you or your neighbor.  What matters is that it comes in the name of Jesus.  Who cares where it came from?  When it touches your heart and brings you closer to Jesus, or to the Father or to the Holy Spirit, it is good!  And that is the essence of the message in the two Scripture passages for Sunday.  Whether from a bishop, a priest or minister, or deacon or a nobody, when it is done in the Name of Jesus, it is good, really good and worthy of His praise and glory!  Our job is to spread the Word anyway we can.  Alleluia!!!