Reflections for the Week
The Challenge for True Discipleship of Christ
As Christians we are expected to treat others well or avoid hurting them. We respect and do good to others. It seems easy enough from our perspective. But what if we are the "beneficiaries" of evil deeds by others or are the object of their persecution and violence?
It is rather "easy" to be Christian until violence or evil is done to us. The Gospel, however, challenges us at the very root of our understanding of what it means to be Jesus' followers. Jesus commands, "Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you." We are to lend without expecting payment; if struck on the cheek, we are to offer the other.
Why are we not permitted to hate those who hate us, expect payment from those who have borrowed from us, and retaliate when harm is done to us? Because the Father is like that, Jesus says. God is good to everyone, good and bad alike. God is merciful to all, kind and merciless alike. we are to act against our natural wishes and imitate our divine and loving Father in heaven.
Jesus says that if we love only those who love us, lend only to those who can repay us, or take revenge on those who hurt us, we are no better than unbelievers who do the same. Jesus expects us to act differently or in accord with who we are: children of God who are loved despite our unfaithfulness and wrongdoing. We Christians are to live as children of light.
This is the heart of Christianity: to love even when we are hated, as Jesus has shown us. Admittedly, this is very difficult fro most of us, especially when we are wronged gravely and we have done nothing to cause it. But as we beg for this grace to be conformed to the heart of Jesus.
Do we have enemies whom we find very hard to forgive? Are our hearts open to receive God's grace so we can eventually forgive and love them?
365 Days With the Lord Renato R Repole SJ
Top 10 Reasons for Becoming a Catechist
If you were looking for a good reason to become a Catechist try some of these:
Fr Bill's Thoughts