The reading from Mark 9:38-50 has a couple of references to Salt.  The one that catches my attention is the last verse – Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can you make it salty again?

Some of the cooking shows I have seen over time talks about salt increasing the taste of the food.  Salt would have been used for the preservation of meat at the time of Jesus.  Salt may have also been used as a form of currency at that time as well.  Useful and important to the people of the time.

If salt loses its saltiness – then it is no longer salt – what is it then?  And what is the purpose of salt without saltiness as it is no longer useful for it’s original purpose.

The verse ends with the suggestion that we have salt within us and be at peace with one another.  The idea of having salt within us – is this like having God within us?  I come back to having a purpose which is part of having God within us.

I know that for me going to walk for the sake of taking a walk is not very good and I rarely have the motivation to do it.  However, if I plan the walk with a purpose – going to shops, having a look at a park or beach, going to the café for a cup of coffee – I find that I will walk every time.

Having God within us allows us to have a purpose – like salt.  Losing our saltiness may mean that God is no longer part of our lives and we have lost our purpose.

Shirley Bowers
Longford Uniting Church