Jesus Gives Us the Haters-Gonna-Hate Talk

Jesus Gives Us the Haters-Gonna-Hate Talk September 16, 2015

I should probably tattoo today’s Gospel reading on the back of my hand.*  I was limping through the first two readings this morning trying to drum up a little spiritual enthusiasm, and then I hit my most desperately-needed annual pep talk from Jesus there in the Gospels.  It’s the Everyone’s a Critic talk.

Providentially, today’s readings fell on the 16th of the month this year, which means I write about it at  An excerpt:

Our Lord points out: You can’t fast and feast at the same time, and there’s a time and place for all of it. People complained John the Baptist was “too holy.” Then they turned around and complained Jesus wasn’t off doing that “holy stuff” enough. That’s the enemy, also called the Accuser, talking to us.

Do we beat ourselves up because we aren’t Everything Christians? If my life is primarily contemplative, am I nagged by a sense I should be doing more corporal works of mercy? If my vocation calls me primarily into one aspect of Christian service, am I bothered that I neglect all the others?

There’s a prayer at the bottom that I should probably tattoo on my other hand.  Read the whole thing at

File:1875 Bouguereau-Vierge-Jésus-SaintJeanBaptiste.jpg
Joseph’s gonna wanna know why the baby’s naked and Elizabeth’s boy’s been at the goat skins with the scissors again.  I’ll get a quick nap while they play, then prepare my meek-n-mild reminder of what it’s like to watch two preschoolers all day.

Artwork: William-Adolphe Bouguereau [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

*I don’t actually think any of us ought to be tattooing stuff on our hands.  I’m old school that way.  Besides which, there are way more Bible verses required to address all my besetting sins than we could ever fit on my exterior.  Better just to store them all in a convenient package, and then ram a little bit into my brain every morning.

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