He called the twelve and began to send them out two by two, and gave them authority over the unclean spirits. He ordered them to take nothing for their journey except a staff; no bread, no bag, no money in their belts; but to wear sandals and not to put on two tunics. He said to them, ‘Wherever you enter a house, stay there until you leave the place. If 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.’ So they went out and proclaimed that all should repent. They cast out many demons, and anointed with oil many who were sick and cured them. (Mark 6:7-13)
Relentless restlessness of Jesus really hits home in Mark. If in Matthew, Jesus moved at a deliberate pace, he’s almost manic in Matthew. He’s ducking into people’s houses to hide from crowds, and spending an awful lot of time crossing the water.
So here Jesus starts sending out his disciples on the same mission of teaching, healing, and exorcism he has been on. Their instructions? Travel light.
I wonder what we can learn from these instructions. Don’t take food or extra clothes, just a good pair of walking shoes & a hiking staff. Nothing except what you need for the road.
But our faith communities too often take more than this when we go out on God’s mission of salvation. Or we don’t go at all because we’re too enamored with our beautiful facilities & extensive campuses.
What would it look like if our congregations & assemblies were outfitted for travel…and nothing more?