A House Divided Cannot Stand

June 10, 2018

In the Gospel Jesus is being challenged by the Scribes.  They are saying Jesus casts out demons by the prince of demons.  They say this is where He is getting His power.  Jesus rebukes them stating that to do so would divide the house and a house divided cannot stand.  Sadly we live in a time in society that many houses are divided.  These divisions have taken on a power of their own.  The hurt and pain runs deep, it causes deep divisions.  We are invited to seek the Lord.  He breaks down barriers and shares with us the reality of truth, that anyone who does the will of God is family, brother and sister, mother and father.

Families need help.  The demands that weigh them down seem to come at a heavy cost.  While providing for a family has taken on sacrifice after sacrifice and parents know this better than anyone, the divisions cause cracks and the cracks sometimes become chasms and the division seems irreparable.  All of this is done with the best of intentions, all of this is done trying to make things better and trying to be the best they can be.  The intentions never divide the house, but sometimes wrong priorities do.  I think most can agree that the fast pace we live is spinning out of control in the lives of family.  At times more is seen as best.  I was speaking to some parishioners about the plight of playing organized baseball in the summer.  It used to be you played one game a weekend, two at most.  Now with travel leagues, with the amount of teams and the pressure to win, games can impact a whole weekend schedule.  While I love to play, the joy of playing fewer games was that you could remember what took place during the game. You could remember the great hit or catch, the stolen base or the challenge you overcame.  Now many players just move on to the next game without enough time to absorb what took place and their part in it.

The challenge to a house divided is a house protected and strong in knowledge and wisdom.  The Gospel would say, if we knew when the thief was coming, we would protect ourselves.  The same is true for family.  If we want a united family, or household, we must be protective of the things that need protecting.  We must fortify these things that are most important.  The family unit has suffered greatly and everyone does the best they can.  Action must be taken to fortify the family and household.  Using God’s wisdom to provide the criteria of what is truly important provides a backdrop for healing and renewal.  Choosing Gospel values and allowing faith to be a loud voice in the discussion provides new avenues of fortification.  Our families need help and strength. Values must come from a voice louder than society.  This takes strong discipline and unwavering faith.  It is provided for us if we place our time and efforts there.  God does not go back on His promises or His word. Before division, choose words and actions that unify.  Before inflicting pain, choose love and forgiveness.  A house divided cannot stand, but a house built on rock cannot be washed away.  Likewise, a seed that falls on good ground will produce a yield of a hundredfold.

More than ever we need to pray for families.  Please join me as we do,

Reverend John J. Ouper