Total Pageviews

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


To both discover and live God’s message of mercy to the poor is the equivalent of physicists discovering the all-encompassing singularity theory. The "Mercy Message" is THE “God surprise” and THE paradox that defines the Kingdom of God. The mystery of mercy is revealed by the Holy Spirit – to those who are spiritually and psychologically ready to hear and to hear, to see and to see, to act and to act upon it.

Catholic Christians in particular embrace the potent “Mercy Message” in the Sacrament of Reconciliation, however only in so much as mercy is embraced as a two-way-street. We receive mercy in the sacrament, but we must also leave the confessional and then go and do likewise; otherwise just receiving mercy is pointless by Jesus’ standards, (see the parable of the wicked servant). In the Sacrament of Reconciliation, the mercy flow floods us to sanctify our lives only when we go out and do the same for others. We must actively be merciful to others according to the mercy God has shown us. “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.”

The call of poverty-stricken Israel (See Poor Israel, Thursday, October 18, 2007) is a microcosm of the mercy message God desires to make known to all of humankind. He wishes to tell us that from birth, "each is a poor nomad" and "each is homeless" until as Augustine once said - "Our souls are restless until they rest in Thee." Our personal poverty, once embraced is the tool that God uses to call us to our homes, peace and rest in Him. In mercy, He rescues each one of us from self-destruction. (If you believe that in and of yourself you are beautiful, successful and not sure why you need a Savior, this will make no sense to you.) Once we accept his mercy for our own personal brokenness and then share it with others, we enter into eternal time and are no longer homeless. Until that happens, each of us is psychologically and in many cases literally nomadic, on the run and destitute.

So, rather than despising the homeless and poor, we are to actively embrace them. They, by God’s design are a sign, image and symbol of the poverty in each one of us waiting to embrace God’s message of mercy. Despise the poor loser and Christ is despised. Embrace the poor and mercifully God sanctifies our wretched lives and shows the way home. Heaven is found. Welcome to THE paradox of the Kingdom of God!



They, by God’s design are a sign, image and symbol of the poverty in each one of us waiting to embrace God’s message of mercy.

Great writing!


Raby Savage said...

I talked with a friend of mine yesterday re: her prosperity preacher's teaching. He preaches in a low-income area of Los Angeles and I've noticed a lot of people in his church, that I know, seem to thrive upon the prosperity
message. Some are merciful to the poor, some are not. It got me thinking. Is it bad to be wealthy, if I help people who are poor?

Remember the gunman at Virginia Tech, near where I went to undergrad school, who shot and killed people on campus? He despised the rich kids, for example.

So what I'm wondering is--if God created and owns everything whatever God entrusts to us is good (however little or much), right?

Anonymous said...

R.S., great question! It is good to be rich with many gifts and/or to be wealthy with money. However, in Jesus's own words, "to whom much is given, much is required." The rich are chiefly bound by the eternal law of love to assist the needy.

Liz said...

You know there is a Catholic practice that not all churches follow called Divine Mercy Sunday. That Sunday culminates in a 9 day novena that consists of the simplest prayers. One prayer that is repeated over and over is 'For the sake of his sorrowful passion have mercy on us and on the whole world'. Another prayer that is said in the novena is "heavenly father, I offer the body, blood, soul and divinty of your dearly beloved son in atonement for OUR sins and the sins of the WHOLE world."

Such simple prayers but so powerful. It includes the rich and powerless, the lonely, the displaced ---all of us in one community and one world. God's Mercy is divine as Jesus is. Their mercy is there for the taking if you open your hearts.