Mark 6:1-13 (NRSV)
Chapter 6He left that place and came to his hometown, and his disciples followed him. Verse 2On the sabbath he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were astounded. They said, "Where did this man get all this? What is this wisdom that has been given to him? What deeds of power are being done by his hands! Verse 3Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon, and are not his sisters here with us?" And they took offense at him. Verse 4Then Jesus said to them, "Prophets are not without honor, except in their hometown, and among their own kin, and in their own house." Verse 5And he could do no deed of power there, except that he laid his hands on a few sick people and cured them. Verse 6And he was amazed at their unbelief.
Then he went about among the villages teaching. Verse 7He called the twelve and began to send them out two by two, and gave them authority over the unclean spirits. Verse 8He ordered them to take nothing for their journey except a staff; no bread, no bag, no money in their belts; Verse 9but to wear sandals and not to put on two tunics. Verse 10He said to them, "Wherever you enter a house, stay there until you leave the place. Verse 11If any place will not welcome you and they refuse to hear you, as you leave, shake off the dust that is on your feet as a testimony against them." Verse 12So they went out and proclaimed that all should repent. Verse 13They cast out many demons, and anointed with oil many who were sick and cured them.
“He ordered them to take nothing.”
Floyd R. was a member of my pastoral internship team—a tall, elderly, grace-filled man whose presence set you at ease. My internship pastor wisely sent me with Floyd to visit a congregant who was hospitalized. I packed a tote bag with a small Bible, hymnal, anointing oil, a Lutheran book of prayers, kleenex, and a communion kit. I wanted to cover all contingencies.
But I never reached into that tote. Instead, I watched Floyd’s affirming presence lend unspoken yet tangible care and strength. Jesus didn’t send his disciples “with nothing.” They knew Jesus and his love. They knew he had called and sent them with good news. Jesus’ instructions told them they were enough. So are you. That afternoon I learned I am enough.
Lord God, help us learn that we are enough as you send us to show your love and care. Amen.