Today's Scriptural Meditation Readings:
October 5 A..D. 2009
Scripture from today's Liturgy of the Word:
Jonah 1:1-2:2, 11
Jonah 2:3, 4, 5, 8
A reflection on today's Scripture:
And who is my neighbor? (see Luke 25:29)
Jesus tells the parable of the good Samaritan. Often much is made of the fact that Samaritans and Jews did not get along well -- they had many disagreements of doctrine and practice. They did not see eye-to-eye on much of importance.
And this point is important to what Jesus is telling us today. Our neighbor isn't the person we agree with. It isn't merely the person who lives next door. It isn't only the person in the upstairs apartment. It isn't merely someone we like. Our neighbor can be someone with whom we would never, never find ourselves in agreement. It can be someone who, given a choice, we wouldn't share the same room with -- a person who, if we saw them in a social environment, we might be inclined to turn around and walk out on.
Just as we don't choose our family, we don't choose our neighbors in the sense that Jesus uses the word. Our neighbor as any person God puts in our way for His purposes. It is any person, whether we agree with them or like them or want to be around them or not, who needs our help -- the unique help that only we can give in that instance. Many will walk on by, but we cannot afford to do so, because in rendering that help, we serve God's purpose in our lives and so strengthen ourselves to serve again.
So, do not be narrow when it comes to neighbor -- you may not choose this person to associate with, but God has chosen them for us. And as the Letter to the Hebrews (13:2) tells us: "Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares."
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Monday, October 5, 2009
Monday of the Twenty-seventh Week in Ordinary Time
Lives of the saints:
Full Scripture text from today's Liturgy of the Word:
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