Posted by: livingscripture | February 24, 2009

Seventh Tuesday of Ordinary Time

From the Word of the Day

 

Taking a child, he placed it in their midst, and putting his arms around it, he said to them, ‘Whoever receives one child such as this in my name, receives me; and whoever receives me, receives not me but the One who sent me’.           

   (Mark 9, 36-37)

 

How should we live this Wordjesus-and-children

 

Jesus is the Teacher.  Many times, both with His disciples and the crowds that follow Him, He turns to the reality of a child to express the criteria of simplicity, purity, and the sign of the Kingdom of heaven.  At other times, He strongly expresses His tenderness and love for the little ones, proclaiming the duty to defend them from harm; ‘it would be better to have a millstone hung around your neck…’  At other times, He expresses His joy that the Father ‘revealed to little ones the secret of the Kingdom’.

 

In today’s Gospel we are invited to identify with them.  Whoever takes care of them, embraces a child, perhaps abandoned and alone, welcomes the Lord.  It is a marvelous reality for us Christians.  It is not an simple reality but one that reveals God and allows Him entry into one’s very life.  It is not easy to welcome.  We must open our arms wide and allow the one before us to enter deeply into our heart, at times without thinking about it too much and walking hand in hand, keeping  to the other’s pace.  Jesus’ promise is fantastic and gives courage and hope to all those who are directly serving the young and children, even at the price of their life.  But this promise is for all of us, because in some way we are all educators, fathers or mothers, if we accept the fatigue of becoming once again small and poor in order to understand and thus become part of the Kingdom.  In fact, ‘If you do not become like children…’  Only the passport of the minority has access to God’s world and disposes us to be God’s dwelling place.

 

In my pause for silent contemplation today, I will ask the Lord for the grace of spiritual childhood so that I may abandon myself, like a child, in His arms.

 

The voice of Helder Camara, a great prophet

 

If arms are not stretched out toward the earth, a child cannot be raised.  In fact, children are closer to the earth and, like the earth, are vulnerable and defenceless.  They are given over to our care.


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