Where Have Three Months Gone
With humble apologies for disappearing from our site, I'd like to try and jump back into blogging weekly.
I've been spending a lot of time lately thinking about justice, mercy and forgiveness. My starting place is always gratitude that God is in charge of judging our actions and intent, not me...because I trust God is way more merciful than human little me would be.
The story of the Good Samaritan we hear this week combined with today's gospel of the naming of the disciples (and their instructions to go to 'the lost sheep of Israel') highlights for me the immensity of God's mercy.
Who were those lost sheep of Israel?
Did the priest and the levite repent over their failure to help the poor man beaten on the side of the road?
Do I repent when I fail to do good for another? When I 'cross the road' to avoid someone in need what does God think of me then?
When I close my eyes or my heart to the plight of another, or when I can't listen to the news anymore-isn't that the same as crossing over to the other side?
The story of the Good Samaritan tells us quite clearly, as Jesus' followers we are called to see the pain of the stranger on the road with us, and we are called to figure out how to help alleviate that pain. We are supposed to do this as individuals, and as a society as well. There's no waffling on this point.
Justice means that there are consequences for our actions. That causes me to pause and reflect seriously on what I'm doing in the here and now...how am I helping or hurting those around me?
Mercy means that when I fall short in my actions, when I neglect to do what I should for my sister or brother, God may take pity on me and not treat me in a like manner.
Forgiveness...ahhh, forgiveness. St Vincent de Paul is quoted as saying "It is only for your love, your love alone that the poor will forgive you the bread you give them." One day we will all have to answer for the times we crossed the road won't we? I pray it's not to late to open my eyes and see what's going on in front of me. I pray I have the courage to act as kindly as that Good Samaritan.