Thursday, October 15, 2015

“A Christianity which ‘does’ little in practice, while incessantly ‘explaining’ its teachings, is dangerously unbalanced.”

“Jesus’ love goes before us, his look anticipates our needs. He can see beyond appearances, beyond sin, beyond failures and unworthiness. He sees beyond our rank in society. He sees beyond this, to our dignity as sons and daughters, a dignity at times sullied by sin, but one which endures in the depth of our soul. He came precisely to seek out all those who feel unworthy of God, unworthy of others.” – Pope Francis: (US / Cuba visit September 2015)
Gospel Text: (Luke 11:47-54)
The Lord said:
“Woe to you who build the memorials of the prophets
whom your fathers killed.
Consequently, you bear witness and give consent
to the deeds of your ancestors,
for they killed them and you do the building.
Therefore, the wisdom of God said,
‘I will send to them prophets and Apostles;
some of them they will kill and persecute’
in order that this generation might be charged
with the blood of all the prophets
shed since the foundation of the world,
from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah
who died between the altar and the temple building.
Yes, I tell you, this generation will be charged with their blood!
Woe to you, scholars of the law!
You have taken away the key of knowledge.
You yourselves did not enter and you stopped those trying to enter.”
When Jesus left, the scribes and Pharisees
began to act with hostility toward him
and to interrogate him about many things,
for they were plotting to catch him at something he might say.
When you think about the state of the world or when you see someone cutting himself off from God (or maybe even running away from him at full speed), how do you react? It can be very easy to get angry or to condemn wrong choices and the people who make them—especially when those choices hurt us in some way. But all it takes is a moment to pause and intercede instead. Turning our hearts to prayer, we can get a taste of the way Jesus mourns over sin—and that taste can soften our hearts and wash away all judgmental thoughts.  
How do you look at yourself? It’s not uncommon for those who view people judgmentally to be equally hard on themselves. Don’t let that happen! God isn’t mad at you. He isn’t weighing the bad in you against the good so that he can remove blessings from you. Remember, Jesus came into the world not to condemn, but to save (John 3:17). If anything, he is saddened when we erect walls between him and us—and when we place walls between one another. 

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