By: Maggie Leonard
Reflection—v. 44, ‘Assuming that he was in the group of travelers’
In Jesus’ time, it was considered dangerous to travel. In fact, this has been true for most
of human history. To be away from one’s people, resources, and stable sources of food and water left the individual vulnerable on a number of accounts. Often times pilgrims,
merchants, and travelers would band together for protection, forming a caravan. These individuals wanted no ill will for others, rather they found safety and companionship in the company of a group. I had a similar experience as I walked across Spain, banding together with other seekers, supporting and helping one another along the way. The same is true of migrants from Central America who make a dangerous passage to seek safer living conditions, as well as those of us who experience homelessness and make camps together. There is a strength and security in numbers. Walking 500 miles is hard. It is done because one has no other choice. Jesus and his parents traveled as a part of a caravan, finding safety among its members as they journeyed to Jerusalem the only way they could. I received a lot of hospitality and help along my way—though I suppose those of us who come from privilege often do. I hope that one day we will all be able to see, value, and foster the livelihood of all who band together in hopes of experiencing a better life, one filled with security, peace, and love.
Prayer: Traveling God, protect us on our journey. May we bind ourselves together in you.