I Must Take Nothing For My Journey

Jesus summoned the Twelve and began to send them out two by two

and gave them authority over unclean spirits. 

He instructed them to take nothing for the journey

but a walking stick—

no food, no sack, no money in their belts. 

They were, however, to wear sandals

but not a second tunic. 

He said to them,

“Wherever you enter a house, stay there until you leave. 

Whatever place does not welcome you or listen to you,

leave there and shake the dust off your feet

in testimony against them.” 

So they went off and preached repentance. 

The Twelve drove out many demons,

and they anointed with oil many who were sick and cured them.

Mark 6: 7-13

One for today’s Gospel reading, to the tune ST. CLEMENT:

I must take nothing for my journey,
no gold or silver for the way,
no comfort for the endless yearning
for someplace I can ever stay.

I must go lightly, all unburdened;
I must lay down all that I have
and take the highways, all uncertain
that I shall win what now I crave.

Then take, O Lord, my busy labors
that barricade me from my fears
and take my dreams of widespread favor,
the name I wish to see revered.

The hope that I am somehow worthy
and worry that I'll never be:
They weigh too much to make this journey.
Lord, take them both away from me.

And give me, in their place, your mercy
that outweighs all my hopes and dreams,
that fills the hungry and the thirsty
with your own ever-flowing streams.

And may I meet, upon the journey,
companions who will show your face,
that we may bear each other's burdens
and go together in your grace.
Vocation of the Apostles, a fresco in the Sistine Chapel by Domenico Ghirlandaio, 1481-82 – Web Gallery of Art:   Image  Info about artwork, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=6636269

O Christ, You Send Your Servants Out

This would work for Ascension, or for the Gospel we had this Sunday for Trinity:

O Christ, you send your servants out
to baptize all the world,
to speak with holy grace and pow'r
the wonders they have heard.,
but send as well your mercy down
into my inner world
to speak into my pain and doubt
yourself, O living Word.

You send us as a living sign
of mercy and of love,
as branches spreading from the vine
they bear the ripeness of.
As in the wide world, so in mine,
O Lord, pour out your love
that I may see your face divine
and tell the world thereof.

You send your servants out to teach,
to turn the world to you
with works of wonder, pow'rs of speech,
and eyes for all that's true.
O Christ, into my heart your reach
to turn myself to you,
and at your feet I hear your preach
as you make me anew.
Drogo Sacramentary c. 850 By Unknown author – Sacramentaire de Drogon, Metz. BNF lat 9428 page 71v., Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=1985948


Although it may not seem like it, this was actually inspired by this Sunday’s Gospel reading about Jesus walking along the shore, calling his disciples. Doubting Thomas and the centurion with sick servant also make appearances.

In deepest night that waits for day,
when we have lost our pride,
when hope and faith have lost their way,
left us without a guide,
when we have broken and betrayed
and run away to hide,
the Lamb appears to us to say,
"Come, touch my hands and side."

This world where sorrow keeps its sway
grinds us beneath its heel.
While pain and loss rule all the day,
we suffer their ordeal.
"Come to us, Lord!" we dare not say,
who so unworthy feel,
but Jesus meets us on the way
to speak the words that heal.

Amid the business of the day
and battles of the night,
we hear the Lamb who calls us say,
"Come, follow now my light."
When we are tangled in the fray
and weary from the fight,
the Lord comes to us anyway
to set the world aright.
The calling of Peter and Andrew, By James Tissot – Online Collection of Brooklyn Museum; Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 2007, 00.159.56_PS1.jpg, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=10195832