“Teacher, which command in God’s Law is the most important?” Jesus said, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your passion and prayer and intelligence.’ This is the most important, the first on any list. But there is a second to set alongside it: ‘Love others as well as you love yourself.’ These two commands are pegs; everything in God’s Law and the Prophets hangs from them.”
Matthew 22: 36-40 (The Message)
God has given us the task of telling everyone what he is doing. We're Christ's representatives. God uses us to persuade men and women to drop their differences and enter into God's work of making things right between them. We're speaking for Christ himself now: Become friends with God; he's already a friend with you.
2 Corinthians 5:18-20 (The Message)
Reconciliation is big word and we have heard a lot about this word with the celebration of the life of Nelson Mandela. We also heard about the healing mission of the church when Pope Francis was recognized as Time’s Person of the Year.
This was a wonderful opportunity to re-examine these words and consider the implications for our lives. My first thought is that both men approach their tasks with different strategies. With further reflection, we see the common concern for the “poor”, those who were excluded politically and those excluded economically. Both men are concerned with the systems that separate us from each other! Both have a deep sense of love for their neighbor. We have been surprised as to who “they see”! For me, the vision of their neighbor is the common element of the ministries of both these men.
We need to pray for help to understand that our obligations are more than just obeying the rules. Help us to be those individuals and communities that witness the larger dimensions of healing by teaching us the power of forgiveness. Expand our ideas of justice and peace and forgive us for being part of the walls that prevent us from becoming your healing agents.
Lischer, R. (2005). The end of words: The language of reconciliation in a culture of violence. Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing.
Hage, M. L. (2012). Fear, Freedom and Reconciliation. Retrieved from http://healingagents.blogspot.com/2012/03/fear-freedom-and-reconciliation.html
Hage, M. L. (2012). Rx Ubuntu. Retrieved from http://healingagents.blogspot.com/2012/04/rx-ubuntu.html