Reflection by Suellen Brewster
Today’s Gospel: Luke 6:27-38 – Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time
Today’s Gospel passage reveals just exactly how counter-cultural life as a Christian is supposed to be. We are called to live all mercy, all the time. Does someone hate you? Love them. Does someone mistreat you? Bless them. Does someone ask too much of you? Give even more to them. Those who don’t know Jesus know how to be “fair” and live “even-Steven”, giving only as much as they receive, loving only as much as they are loved. But this is not the model of love Jesus gave us on the Cross. He gave to us, who love so very little, every bit of His life and love, holding nothing back for himself.
These words of Jesus are like a how-to guide for being merciful. As Christians we have heard and read this passage a thousand times in our lives. But do we mentally refer to it when we receive that curse, that slap, that unfair judgment? In the moment when injustice happens to us it is hard to think and act like Christ. But that is precisely when we can ask the Holy Spirit to help us call upon those thousand hearings and readings of these scriptures, and use them as a how-to guide for overriding our inflamed emotions and being merciful instead.
Come, Holy Spirit, help me, in the heat of the moment of injustice, to call upon Jesus’ words of mercy and love so that I can respond with that same mercy and love.
When have I responded to injustice with Jesus’ mercy and love and found that I received peace in “good measure, packed together, shaken down, and overflowing”? How can I respond this way more often?
Copyright 2019 Suellen Brewster
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