Today’s Gospel: Matthew 21:33-43, 45-46
“Finally, he sent his son to them thinking, ‘They will respect my son.'” Mt 21:37
My mom has been a Special Police Officer in my hometown for over forty years. From time to time, she had to participate in target practice and serve on matron duty when a female was taken into custody. Mostly, she directed traffic for the schools, and still does so today.
As a senior in high school, I was pulled over for speeding on the way to our rival’s school to toilet paper the place before the big Thanksgiving game. You can bet I mentioned my mother’s name as soon as I could, hoping to get special treatment. Sure enough, I got just a tap on the wrist and a quick lecture to slow down.
Jesus, and the son in the parable of the tenants, weren’t as fortunate. The key players certainly knew each of their fathers. Yet, rather than being lenient because of that, they were threatened by it, and killed each one as a consequence.
On our end, do we know the Father deeply enough to recognize His Son in others? Would doing so inspire us to give them special treatment and be more lenient, patient, forgiving, and loving when they do something wrong?
When we pass a person in a drug-induced stupor or anyone else who threatens our perception of the world, do we respond with mercy and kindness? Or do we retaliate with judgment and inaction in order to protect our status quo?
Jesus came to challenge us with all these questions and scenarios. It’s critical to answer them for ourselves, checking our responses against the answer-key that all of His parables are in the Gospels.
Do I look hard enough to see Jesus in the eyes of others? How would doing so change my response?
Dear God, make me mindful of finding You in all whom I meet. May I always extend them special treatment in Your name.
Copyright 2020 CLaire McGarry
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