Posted by: livingscripture | March 7, 2009

First Saturday of Lent

From the Word of the Day

 

You have heard the commandment, ‘You shall love your countryman but hate your enemy’.  My command to you is; love your enemies, pray for your persecutors.  This will prove that you are children of your heavenly Father.   (Mt. 5, 43-45)

 

How should we live this Word

 

Here too, Jesus opens a window on an immense horizon, that of love.  No, I cannot remain in the narrowness of my ego that seeks to control my existence at all times.  These persons in my family or outside it are honest, good, loving, and sympathetic.  How can I not love them?   They even do favors for me.  How can I refrain from reciprocating?  These others instead, are stumbling blocks.  They are so inconstant, coarse, anxious, so self-centered.  They always have something to complain about in regard to me and are interested only in what can cause me harm!  And you ask me to love them?  It is like telling me to throw myself into the highest and sharpest reefs of the sea.  gesicht-christus-impegno-klein

 

Precisely!  This is very true and you will never be able to do it by yourself.  But Jesus has come so that you would have ‘a life saver around your waist’ that is the grace of His death and resurrection.  With that life saver you can throw yourself into the sea of a love without shores.  Try it!  Pray for those who are hostile to you or even only annoying.  Pray for your enemies or even those with only a depressed and difficult character.  Pray to enter into the greater love.

 

One of the basic maxims of the Chassidim was:  in whatever difficult relational situation that blocks you, love more.

 

In my pause for silent contemplation today I will spend time praying for the person that is most irksome for me.

 

Lord, I pray You, grant me Your strength to overcome the hostility of others and that seeks to sink deep roots in me.  Oh Jesus, crucified and risen, grant that I may love them more.

 

The voice of Hèlder Camara, witness and prophet

 

Your heart is agitated.  On hearing an insult, you want to vindicate yourself and…you have drowned.  Why?  Because Christ is asleep in you.  What does this mean?  It means you have forgotten Christ.  Therefore, awaken Christ, remember Christ, let Christ be awake in you…You had forgotten that as He was being crucified, He said, ‘Father, forgive them because they do not know what they are doing’ (Luke 23, 24).  He, who was asleep in your heart, did not want revenge.


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