"passing through the midst of them"

Yesterday I was feeling pushed. By the preparations needed for the upcoming retreat, by the demands of farm work, by the community activities (there's a wedding here tomorrow). I opted out of the activities last night, needing the space.

Then this morning I recalled Jesus' response when he was being pushed by the crowds. I was just reading the story of his appearance in the synagogue when he read Isaiah 61 (we'll use that during the retreat). The story ends with these lines:

When they heard this, all in the synagogue were filled with wrath. And they rose up and put him out of the city, and led him to the brow of the hill on which their city was built, that they might throw him down headlong. But passing through the midst of them he went away. (Lk 4.28-30)
Then there was the time when the crowd had other ideas for Jesus:
When the people saw the sign which he had done, they said, "This is indeed the prophet who is to come into the world!" Perceiving then that they were about to come and take him by force to make him king, Jesus withdrew again to the mountain by himself. (Jn 6.14-15)

In both cases, Jesus would not be pushed by their expectations or demands. He withdrew. Went away to clear his head, pray, listen to his Father.